Women Oppression In Literature

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We’re Not Going To Take It: Women Oppression in Literature
What is oppression? Oppression is defined as “prolonged cruel or unjust treatment” (“Oppression” par. 1) Women have experienced maltreatment since the Fall of Mankind. The subjection of women has decreased within the past two centuries, due to their natural rights being acknowledged. Over the years, people have protested the treatment of women through literature. “Girl,” “Married Life,” “Punishment,” and "The Declaration of Sentiments" shares the theme of women’s oppression. Despite having the same themes, the authors use distinct social context and develop their arguments differently.
Jamaica Kincaid, author of “Girl,” displays the unfair treatment of young women in Antiguan society. In the poem, a girl is receiving a lecture on how to be a woman. She is not encouraged to be herself or to gain an education. In fact, the mother continuously refers to her as a slut, “the slut I know you are so bent on becoming“ (Kincaid 1146) The role of the Antiguan woman is that of homemaker. Berleant-Schiller suggests, “the domestic domain of women is sometimes implicitly regarded as inferior” (Berleant-Schiller 254). Women in Antiguan society are taught extensively how to prepare meals and set tables. Where and how an Antiguan family eat indicates their social standing (Berleant-Schiller 259). Kincaid identifies the importance of the meal place through the use of repetition.

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