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Physical labor was demanded, women now began to look after the home as men perform more physical duties, and the pattern was set. The role of women was to be a significant part of the entire society. Many historical feminists such as Alice Walker and Isabel Allende believed that women were necessary in order for the society to run smoothly. Women have been treated as unequal and far different from men (Majupuria, 1990). These feminists believed that although men were stronger physically than women, women had strengths far much superior in most areas. This made women more suited in life for certain responsibilities. This paper therefore seeks to address women’s role then and now. In so doing, the paper will script a conversation between two notable women from 18th and 19th century (Alice Walker and Isabel Allende) on the roles women should play in the society. In this conversation, the paper will include biographic details of the women, their historical status in the period they lived, the opinion the held during the time they lived on the role women should play in the society, and what they might think about the current roles of women. Alice Walker, best referred to as the author of The Color Purple, was Georgia sharecropper’s eighth child. ...
Alice Walker became known to a much wider audience in 1982 when The Color Purple came out. This brought both controversy and fame. She was criticized widely for portraying men negatively in The Color Purple. Alice Walker was credited with introducing for African American feminism the word “womanist”. Alice Walker took on the female circumcision in Africa in 1989 and 1992 in Possessing the Secret of Joy and The Temple of My Familiar. This brought further controversy on the role of women in the society and attracted questions whether Alice Walker was a cultural imperialist so as she could criticize other cultures. The works of Alice Walker are known for emphasis on women roles and portrayal of the life of African American life. She illustrates vividly the racism, poverty, and sexism that make a woman life a struggle. She also portrayed women as the strengths of the community and family, and as a person of self worth and spirituality. Most of Alice Walker’s novels show women in other history periods than our own. For example, she gives a sense of similarities and differences of the condition of women today and in the past. Alice Walker has continued to be active in feminist causes and matters of economic justice focusing on the role of women (Walker, 1998). Isabel Allende was born in Peru, Lima to a Chilean diplomat father. She lived with her divorced mother. Isabel Allende worked as a secretary and then journalist on television, print and in documentary movies. After the assassination and overthrow of Salvador Allende, her uncle, president of Chile in 1973, Isabel, her husband and children left for Venezuela for safety. It was during exile that Isabel begun to write her first novel,
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