Eveline: A Strong Feminist Heart
Ever wonder what it was like for a feminist in the 1914’s? It was tough. But what is even tougher is being a child in the family that has to take over her mother’s responsibilities when she dies and then face the violence of a father who does not appreciate the child being a girl. Women were constantly mistreated and not given any positions of power, not even in their own home, where they would be the only ones to be clean it, cooking in it, and taking care of the children. If a mother would pass away, the oldest girl child would be handed the responsibility of being the mother, whether she wanted to or not. Of course, there was the option of running away and escaping that fate; however, society would never allow such a girl to have any kind of good life. James Joyce proves this in his short story, “Eveline” portrays a theme of Women’s Suffragists through the character of Eveline who is a feminist in the year 1914 in Ireland; her life is a life of duty as a girl, violence from her father, society’s looks on her, and her choice of lifestyle in the end.
Eveline’s mother passed away and left all the duties of a mother, wife, and sister to Eveline. She was left to clean the house at least once a week (Joyce p. 532). As Eveline was sitting at her home, she was thinking about everything that she has gone through in her life because of her mother’s death and she was remembering how she had to take care of everything because she was a girl. She had to “[…] work hard to keep the house together and to see that the two young children who had been left to her charge went to school regularly and got their meals regularly” (Joyce p. 533). It is not easy to have two children to send off to school or to have them eat healthy and on time, yet Eveline had to endure it, even though she was not the real mother of the children but rather their big sister. Eveline was “[…] tired” of her life and she wanted a way to escape (Joyce p. 532)....
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