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Argumental on Virginia Woolf Shakespeares Sister - Essay Example

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Summary
The concept of identity is one which is altered according to perspective and the way in which author’s look at different circumstances. In the concept of “Shakespeare’s Sister” by Virginia Woolf, there is an understanding of changing perspectives and how it relates to identity…
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Argumental on Virginia Woolf Shakespeares Sister

Download file to see previous pages... Woolf points out that the basis of cultural identity and social expectations is what depicts one’s genius and outcome, as opposed to the ability to develop as an individual independently shows the main identity which one holds. The first way in which Woolf shows the difference in social status and identity as the outcome is through the definition of Judith as Shakespeare’s sister [argument by definition]. The concept is one which is related to the definition of what it means to be a woman. Woolf shows how Shakespeare easily could have gone into social circles, schooling and other areas because of the time frame and what had occurred. Woolf states: “Meanwhile his extraordinary gifted sister, let us suppose, remained at home. She was adventurous, as imaginative, as agog to see the world as he was. But she was not sent to school. She had no chance of learning grammar and logic, let alone of reading Horace and Virgil” (Woolf, 56). This excerpt defines how the difference between men and women in the same family is dependent on social status. The identity comes from the definition of what it means to be a woman within society and how this is what sets one’s destiny. The definition of Shakespeare as well as his sister both shows how the very definition of gender is what creates the alternatives for the destiny which each reaches. The second concept which is used by Woolf is the comparison of Judith and Shakespeare [comparison]. The comparison which is made is one which is defined by the gender difference which offers opportunity. The concept is based first on how Shakespeare is the “apple of her father’s eye” (56) because of his theater and acting skills. This allowed him to walk through open doors which then sets his career in pace for writing some of the best features in theater. However, when comparing this to Judith, that had the same amount of talent, a different outcome was created. “She stood at the stage door; she wanted to act, she said. Men laughed in her face. The manager – a fat, looselipped man – guaffawed. He bellowed something about poodles dancing and women acting – no woman, he said, could possibly be an actress” (Woolf, 57). Both genders are noted to have the same upbringing and opportunity; however, the lack of schooling and the definition of gender stop Judith from being able to go forward. However, there is a comparison between the two and what opportunities should be available. The comparison is one which becomes based on gender as women don’t have the ability to act while men have open doors to acting. This is another example of the differences in gender and how it leads to a change in identity and expectations of what should happen to the individual during their life time because of social standards. Opportunities and how this changes destiny is furthered with the expectations that are given to Judith’s life because of her gender. [example] The example is one which shows how the changes in destiny and life path are altered according to gender. Shakespeare is immediately able to go to London to study while Judith is expected to be married and to not oppose her position in life. “But then her parents came home and told her to mend the stockings and mind the stew and not moon about with books and papers…. She cried out that marriage was hateful to her, and for that she was severely beaten by her father” (Woolf, 57). Woolf sets the example of what it means to be a woman and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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