Freedom For A Woman Of Empire

883 Words4 Pages
Freedom for a woman of Empire is a convoluted notion. Analyzing three novels with female heroines, resulted in the realization that the plight for women to gain independence essentially had only one avenue—marriage. Each character lived very different lives, and their path, and reasoning for marriage varied. One variable in their decision to marry remained constant; In order to attain freedom, one must have the financial means for independence. Olivia, Jane, and, Lyndall, enter into the patriarchal institution of marriage because they essentially have no other option. However, all three heroines enter and/or exit the institution of marriage on their own terms, which situates them as the dominant participant in the marriages. Olivia Fairfield needed to marry in order to establish herself financially. Her inheritance depended on her union with her cousin Augustus. Olivia knows that marrying is her only prospect at gaining financial independence. Although the marriage ends, she is able to leave with money of her own. Throughout the novel, Olivia makes her reader aware that she knows and understands the limitations of gender, and especially the limitations of a woman of color. A woman of color with no money, and parental support, has one choice to be financially independent, and that is though marriage. Although she had a fair amount of freedom and independence in Jamaica, because of her father, she had to travel to England and marry if she wanted financial stability. She
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