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Gender Relations and hypocrisy as they are discussed in Household Gods - Book Report/Review Example

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Gender Relations and hypocrisy as they are discussed in Household Gods Name Class Date Gender Relations and hypocrisy as they are discussed in Household Gods The dream of a better time, a past in which life was more simple, more romantic, and less harried than modern day life is the theme in which Household Gods written by Judith Tarr and Harry Turtledove explores by transporting a modern day female attorney into the past…
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Gender Relations and hypocrisy as they are discussed in Household Gods
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Download file to see previous pages Moreover, she finds that where in modern society there is an effort to equalize the sexes, she is in a time where this effort is not only absent, but unacceptable. Through the revelations of the meanings of true slavery and gender inequality, Nicole gains perspective on modern life and, in the end, is empowered by it. The life that Nicole is leading typifies the modern standard. She is harried, her babysitter quitting at the last minute, her potential partnership for which she contributed more work than her male associate on the defining work, is given to him instead. She discovers that it is her lack of ‘cooperation’, her female nature as it did not give over to the ‘boys’ club’ as either one of them or a sexual toy for them. As is often the case in modern life, the fact of being female was impeding her ability to succeed, not by the cause of femininity, but because of the extra social pressures that exist within the world of women. Children, career, and management of the household can create an unmanageable life that is full of stress and frustration. For Nicole, her husband has divorced her and she is struggling to make ends meet on all fronts. “I wish I’d lived then” she said. “It would have been a good time to be alive, not so…artificial as it is now. Not so hateful”.1 It is a simple wish that sends Nicole into the past, one that the gods that she had by her bedside, Liber and Libera were willing to make. As in all good literary wish fulfillment, the lessons would be in the form of a journey and they would be hard lesson to learn. Nicole falls into second century A.D., and her first encounter is with using the chamber pot, a moment in which the lack of modern hygiene is made clear. In discovering the nature of life in a time she felt was more natural and less artificial, she finds that life that is more natural is not always more pleasant. The first point that is made on the comparison of gender between the present and the ancient past is that although the idea of female oppression is still relevant, the experience of it has changed dramatically. While women are often treated as if they have no sense or no ability to fully comprehend the world, the actual accepted practice of this type of imposition upon the character of women is not usually a blatant reality in Western society. In the novel, this is made clear because of the way in which the slave is treated, her existence in the form of a childlike beast that much be tortured to glean the truth or ask permission to use something like money that is given to her. While it would be assumed that male slaves would have the same treatment, the novel uses it as a metaphor for the issue of gender submission. The relationship between Calidius and Umma continues the discussion that is begun with Julia and the nature of a slave. Calidius treats Umma in what is considered in modern terms a misogynistic manner. Her calls her ’pretty lady’ and chucks her under the chin, a movement that Nicole feels is demeaning and insulting. The nature of this discussion is reflective of the way in which women were treated in Western society as it can be seen in Henrik Ibsen’s A Doll’s House. Nora, the protagonist, is treated like a petulant child ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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