Dickens’s Attitudes Toward Women
In the early nineteenth century, women were the sole possession of the male in charge. Trained to be elegant and submissive, wives were merely there to compliment their husbands and their families in general. However females presented themselves depicted the line from which they came, and their mannerisms functioned as a representation of the man with which they lived. These sorts of practices were typical in the 1800’s, and women seemed to be more of a source of entertainment, distraction, and satisfaction than anything else. Not before the mid-1840s did Dickens begin to view society in its organic wholeness. (Johnson) In short, Dickens opinions and attitudes directed towards women spring from an abundance of practiced and implied social and political laws accumulated over hundreds of years. In my eyes, Dickens seems to have a small amount of hidden admiration for women within his twisted, male-centered, idealistic mind; as we would say today. Despite the naïve, witless, and helpless nature he bestows upon women in his literature, he still manages to shroud a part of the female spirit in mystery. Most of Dickens’s views on women come straight from the society of his day, but he leaves the door of curiosity and imagination open when it comes to exploring the mind of a woman, and even considering her thoughts on a subject in Barnaby Rudge. Even though he seems as if he may be open to some futuristic ideas in his literature, Charles Dickens is grounded in his social and political upbringing where society rules. In my opinion, the society of the 1800’s was extremely flawed, even more so than the society of our current day. The first subject I am going to cover is over the domestic duties of women, both in Dickens’s time, and our own. In the 1800’s, women were primarily meant for the home. Upper class women rarely ventured out unless it was for some kind of fancy ball or other fanciful activity. In that day, young women were...
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