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Madeleine - Essay Example

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Student’s 1) How did “Madeleine” become a prostitute? Although Madeleine was born in a secure middle class family, her life changed abruptly when her father became a drunkard. Her thirst for quality education was not fulfilled since her family became financially ruined by her father’s alcoholic habits…
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Download file to see previous pages The talks with the prostitutes in her neighborhood started altering Madeline morals. However, she moved to St. Louis to live with a friend while she was seventeen. She began to work in a factory but realized she was pregnant after working for a few months. She thus ran away from the friend’s house and moved into a brothel within Kansas since she could not support herself financially. To hide her identity, she invented the name Madeleine Blair. She later lost her baby and almost managed to avoid being engaged in sex trade when she migrated to Chicago. In Chicago, she started her life working in a department store. However, the salary is meager and she could not support herself. She ended up getting back to prostitution. Therefore, the major reason why Madeleine got into prostitution was the unplanned pregnancy. When she realized she was pregnant, she was ashamed of herself and left her friend’s house. Since she had no means to support herself she ended up getting into prostitution. Another reason that led Madeleine get into prostitution was her early exposure to talks regarding prostitution. She had lived in environments where prostitution was considered a lesser vice. Therefore, she easily got into the sex industry when she was compelled by her financial needs. Although she was aware of the existence of sex industry, she had tried to avoid being a prostitute by searching for a noble job since she wanted to retain her respect. However, the dire need for money and her condition of being pregnant drove her into the industry. Alter some time, her desire for money increased making it hard for her to leave the sex industry. She started migrating from brothel to brothel and ended up establishing her own brothel in Canada. 2) What does her story tell us about life during the late Gilded Age? How was she affected by industrialization, urbanization, rural decline, and the social problems associated with these transformations? In the Autobiography, Madeleine approves that the sex industry was of great economic benefit to the western countries. Madeleine considers prostitution as the only way that women could contribute to economic growth. Even the authorities and most people in Canada viewed sex industry as important in enhancing economic growth. Men considered brothels as crucial and would even go to nearby town in search of sex if there were no brothels in their locality. As industrialization progressed, men started earning better salaries. Most of them spent part of their salaries to pay for sex. This demonstrates that industrialization contributed to increase in prostitution. Madeleine describes her brothel as one that constituted an important social and economic component. It fulfilled the needs of the working class (Anonymous 180-184). To the girls who worked in the brothel, it was their source of income hence a form of employment. Moreover, the local municipal authorities greatly benefited from the bribes that Madeleine gave them. The common people viewed prostitution as an important component of the local economy that was beneficial to all. Women could get employment, the authorities made profits, and men had some place to spend their leisure time. Therefore, people viewed brothels as institutions as important sector of the economy that enhanced exchange of money. With industrialization, there was increased number of women in urban centers. To them, prostitution was a noble way of earning ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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