Equality between men and women is not always accepted in society. In the previous era, men were seen as the person who had the rights to rule over others and who could work outside the home. But the woman was seen only as a woman from home, she had the responsibility of taking care of the children, doing all household chores and her opinion was never considered. In Alice Munro story “Boys and Girls “, the narrator of the story is a girl who lives on a fox farm with her parents and a younger brother but her character is seen between the conflict with society and her desires because the difference of role that plays each genre.
Paul is the main character in Willa Cather’s short story titled, “Paul’s Case”. Paul is a very troubled young man who believes he is destined for greatness. He was always in trouble at school and was never content with being himself. Paul had a very troubling past where his father would constantly emotionally abuse him and was always looked down upon at school. Paul feels that his is stuck where he his and cannot control his own future. One symbol used in this story was Cordelia Street. This is the street that Paul grew up on and he talks about this street as being boring and common, much like his life. Paul has a real problem with his past and how to escape it. Because
Teenage rebellion is typically portrayed in stories, films, and other genres as a testosterone-based phenomenon. There is an overplayed need for one to acknowledge a boy’s rebellion against his father, his life direction, the “system,” in an effort to become a man, or rather an adult. However, rarely is the female addressed in such a scenario. What happens when little girls grow up? Do they rebel? Do they, in a sudden overpowering rush of estrogen, deny what has been taught to them from birth and shed their former youthful façades? Do they turn on their mothers? In Sharon Olds’ poem, “The Possessive,” the reader is finally introduced to the female version of the popular coming-of-age theme as a simple
Paul also openly criticizes conformity frequently throughout the story. Paul’s criticisms can be seen in his detailed observations of people and their routines. However, none of these criticisms compare to Paul’s hate for his home on Cordelia Street. Cather describes Cordeila Street, noting that all the houses are identical, as well as its inhabitants. Following the description of the street, Cather describes Paul’s hatred for his mediocrity plagued home is expressed: “Paul never went up Cordelia Street without a shudder of loathing… he approached it to-night with the nerveless sense of defeat, the hopeless feeling of sinking back forever into ugliness and commonness that he had always had when he came home”(Pg. 5). Later on in the story, while Paul is in New York and is contemplating his fear of being reprimanded for his actions, he constantly reminds himself of the painful existence that awaits him on Cordelia Street: “It was to be worse than jail, even; the tepid waters of Cordelia Street were to close over him finally and forever. The grey monotony stretched before him in hopeless, unrelieved years”(Pg. 13). Cather seems to use Cordiela street as a all-encompassing metaphor for conformist society; and Paul’s individuality and hate for Cordiela Street serves as the contrasting element, in turn becoming the most
In “A Jury of Her Peers” by Susan Glaspell and “A Rose for Emily” by William Faulkner, both authors introduce female protagonists that are confined by men’s authority. By displaying the protagonist's transformation, Glaspell and Faulkner highlight the repercussions of gender roles, to show that when women are trapped, they will go to great lengths to retaliate against their oppressors.
Willa Cather’s “Paul’s Case” is a story about a young 16 year-old man, Paul, who is motherless and alienated. Paul’s lack of maternal care has led to his alienation. He searches for the aesthetics in life that that he doesn’t get from his yellow wallpaper in his house and his detached, overpowering father figure in his life. Paul doesn’t have any interests in school and his only happiness is in working at Carnegie Hall and dreams of one-day living the luxurious life in New York City. Paul surrounds himself with the aesthetics of music and the rich and wealthy, as a means to escape his true reality.
“Boys and Girls” is a short story, by Alice Munro, which illustrates a tremendous growing period into womanhood, for a young girl living on a fox farm in Canada, post World War II. The young girl slowly comes to discover her ability to control her destiny and her influences on the world. The events that took place over the course of the story helped in many ways to shape her future. From these events one can map the Protagonist’s future. The events that were drawn within the story provided the Protagonist with a foundation to become an admirable woman.
There was a time when society did not consider men and women as equal. Men were considered as the superior human being and the dominant figures of authority in the house while the woman had to be a subservient. Alice Munro uses some interesting details in “Boys and Girls” to hold the readers captive. She takes us on a journey in an era where the male child was deemed more important than the female child. “Boys and Girls is a story about a girl’s struggle in accepting the role society has forced upon her in such a vivid manner that it draws the reader to want to know what happens next. In “Telling Tails,” by Tim O’Brien, he illustrates what a good story should be by using story examples. O’Brien believes that “Boys and Girls” is good story because the author uses a well-imagined plot, striking and dramatic elements, and the ability to reach deep into the heart of readers.
In Alice Munro’s “Boys and Girls,” there is a time line in a young girl’s life when she leaves childhood and its freedoms behind to become a woman. The story depicts hardships in which the protagonist and her younger brother, Laird, experience in order to find their own rite of passage. The main character, who is nameless, faces difficulties and implications on her way to womanhood because of gender stereotyping. Initially, she tries to prevent her initiation into womanhood by resisting her parent’s efforts to make her more “lady-like”. The story ends with the girl socially positioned and accepted as a girl, which she accepts with some unease.
In order to properly view a story from a feminist perspective, it is important that the reader fully understands what the feminist perspective entails. “There are many feminist perspectives, and each perspective uses different approaches to analyze and interpret texts. One is that gender is “socially constructed” and another is that power is distributed unequally on the basis of sex, race, and ethnicity, religion, national origin, age, ability, sexuality, and economic class status” (South University Online, 2011, para. 1). The story “Girl” is an outline of the things young girls
In Lives of Girls and Women, people grow out of reading. As the protagonist Del says, reading “persisted mostly in unmarried ladies, would have been shameful in a man” (Munro, 117). As in The Bell Jar, women in Lives of Girls and Women who are educated and who are professionals are seen as masculine and immature. Mature and marriageable women learn to use make-up and to flaunt their physical beauty. Del overturns this rule by memorizing poetry and doing well academically. Both Esther and Del feel that academic achievements best define and express their sexuality, though not necessarily enhancing their sexual lives. While the bored, rich girls in The Bell Jar spend most of their time painting their nails and getting a tan, Esther feels out of place among the idle and the fashion-conscious. Her friend Doreen admits that at her college, all the girls “had pocket-book covers made out of the same material as their dresses”(Plath, 5). The night that Doreen returns drunken from the apartment of a stranger named Lenny, Esther closes her door on her friend but does not have the heart to lock it. Thus, Esther successfully shuts out the false societal values of female sexuality for a while, but acknowledges that her form of sexuality must co-exist with that of Doreen and of other females in her society.
Throughout the story we see the protagonist struggle with the gender roles placed upon her by her society; specifically the role she is supposed to play as
Girls, young women, and mature mothers. Society has consistently given women strict guidelines, rules and principles on how to be an appropriate member of a man’s society. These rules are set at a young age and enforced thoroughly into adulthood. When not followed accordingly, women often times too many face reprimanding through means of verbal abuse, physical abuse, or social exile. In the midst of all these strict guidelines and social etiquette for girls, a social rebellion started among girls and women and gender roles were broken, however the social rebellion did not and does not affect all girls and women. For instance, in less socially developed places, young girls on the brink of womanhood are still strongly persuaded to be a man’s idea of a “woman”.
puberty bring with it a complex tradition of restrictions and behavioral guidelines. Kincaid’s poem reveals the rigidity and complexity of the social confines the girl is expected to operate underl. A girl is an induction into the women community as well as an orientation into the act of womanhood (Walkerdine et. al.). The lectured instructions given to the silent girl child vary from the housekeeping, “this is how you sweep a whole house”, to dealing with intimate relationships, “this is how a man bullies you; …how to bully a man” to medicine, “this is how to make good medicine (to abort)” (Kincaid).The inane patriarchal society expects gender stereotypes to prevail. The mother is tasked to give her daughter instructions on how to be a good woman in the stereotyped society. The advice the mother gives to the daughter cements the gender stereotype and portrays limitations on a woman (Bailey and Carol 107).
People are shaped by the external forces that act upon them. They can choose whether or not to accept the pressure and conform to them or they can reject it altogether, further reinforcing their original traits. Sometimes these external forces are too substantial for the individual to handle and they have no choice but to conform and submit to these forces. In the short story “Boys and Girls”, written by Alice Munro the protagonist begins to discover that society plays an important role in the shaping of a one's character and personality. In her childhood, the protagonist exhibits a very unorthodox nature as she prefers to do manual labour alongside her father rather than residing in her house doing more domestic tasks. As the protagonist