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Womens Rights - Book Report/Review Example

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For centuries, women around the world have suffered at the hand of gender preferences, often victimized by their husbands and the beliefs of their culture. Through the brave voices of Kate Chopin, Ousmane Sembene and Mahashweta Devi the lives of these victimized women have been brought to light…
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Womens Rights Book Report/Review
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Download file to see previous pages The common factor trying all three works together is shown in the way the women are underappreciated and berated due to beliefs stemming from the social conditions within their societies. Through their eye opening stories, Father of Desiree's Baby, Her Three Days and Giribala, the authors capture the sorrow and injustice that these women faced bringing truth to the forefront.
In Father of Desiree's Baby Chopin tells the story of a woman who is penalized not only because of her husband's ignorance, but of her nation's discrimination of African Americans. The story is set in the United States pre-civil war south where slavery was in full effect. In the story, a ''fiery Creole planter'' falls into a rage when his wife gives birth to a mulatto baby. The planter,
convinced that the racial ''taint'' had come from her, drives the wife to kill herself and her baby" (Bernstein). When Desiree's child is born with brown pigmented skin she is shunned by her husband. She argues in vain to prove to him that the child is his and that they are both white, but it proves useless. At the time, women were held in high regard for the virtuousness and superiority of her moral and character. Both traits that disappeared as soon as it was determined Desiree's child had brown skin. She describes her husband as a changed man who no longer seems to have any love for either their child or herself. Chopin truly conveys the feelings of heartbreak that Desiree feels stating, "I shall die. I must die. One cannot be so unhappy and live" (Chopin).
The way is which Chopin chooses to write the story is very interesting. She does not disclose the truth until the very end of the story in what seems to be an attempt at making the reader form their own opinion about Desiree's honesty. Although Desiree's baby has brown skin, her heartbreak and genuine love for her husband cancels out the possibility that she would have known anything about her heritage or if she had has an affair. Leaving the reader blind causes them to face the story just as Desiree's husband and mother did. Both were clueless as to why the baby had brown skin and were forced to conclude that Desiree was to blame. They reacted in ways that were dictated by their society. Both showed racial discrimination when looking at the baby, associating brown skin with slaves and a race they believed to be subservient to their own. Through no fault of her own, Desiree is doomed to suffer. It is not until the very
end of the story that Chopin reveals the truth by allowing Desiree's husband to find his mother's old letter which read, "Night and day I thank the good God for having so arranged our lives that our dear Armand will never know that his mother, who adores him, belongs to the race that is cursed with the brand of slavery" (Chopin).
The question asked in Sembene's Her Three Days is why it shouldn't be that every woman should "have a husband of one's own" (Sembene) Like most women in most cases, the Senegalese narrator is sold at a young age to become one of many wives of the men in the village were the family resides. At the time that the story takes place this practice was considered to be a social norm and a common occurrence prone to women in India and Africa. This sad situation is highlighted in Ousmane's story as her protagonist, Noumbe, is struggling with having to share her husband with other women, and feels jealousy towards the newest wife. Her new found reality ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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