The Female Body

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In the Canadian culture, which we find ourselves in today, the roles and importance of women are overlooked. Women are seen as objects, and are often undermined in our society. More specifically the roles of the female body have been manipulated and changed to make women feel inferior to men. The essays “The Female Body” by Margaret Atwood and “The Egg and the Sperm: How Science Has Constructed a Romance Based on Male-Female Roles” by Emily Martin, both portray the female body and the use of the female body in a way that is inferior to that of a man’s body. These essays also both use a persuasive approach to persuade the reader to acknowledge the problem and take action to change it. The use of the female body in reproduction has been overlooked and made to look like a minor part of reproducing. It has been portrayed as being inferior to the roles played by men in this cycle. The female body has also been portrayed with a large variety of stereotypical roles, different uses, and other ways that specifically men view the female body. This essay with identify the issues raised in “The Female Body” and “The Egg and the Sperm: How Science Has Constructed a Romance Based on Male-Female Roles”. It will also display the persuasive nature of these texts with the intention of sheading light on the subject with the hopes that people will take action against the negative attention the female body gets.

In the essay “The Egg and the Sperm: How Science Has Constructed A Romance Based on Female-Male Roles” by Emily Martin, the idea of women being inferior to men in reproduction is presented in a way that persuades the reader to take action against the discrimination being shown towards women. This essay shows that over recent time people have given males and females stereotypes based on the use of the egg and the sperm. Emily Martin chose to focus on the female body and its use during reproduction in her writing. In this essay she states that, “the picture of egg and sperm drawn in popular as well as scientific accounts of reproductive biology relies on stereotypes central to our cultural definitions of males and females. The stereotypes imply not only that female biological processes are less worthy than their male counterparts but also that women are less worthy than men” (Martin, 169). In many ways the female body is shown as inferior to that of a man’s body. In reproduction specifically the female body has been deconstructed to show that it is useless in many ways. Reproduction is a vital cycle to human life, without the reproduction cycle the human species would cease to exist. Scientist have described the female cycle in ways that makes females appear useless compared men. In most scientific articles and journal that explore the reproduction cycles of both men and women, the female reproduction cycle is described as, “ being designed to produce eggs and prepare a suitable place for them to be fertilized and grown-all to the end of making babies” (Martin, 169). Other then that the other uses of the female reproductive cycle, such as the growth and development of the baby are left out and not discussed. It is also described being wasteful because women produce thousands of eggs and only shed one a month, and the rest end up dying and being removed from the body is different ways. The process of menstruation, which is the sheading of the uttering lining, has been described as the death of tissues, as dying, losing, expelling the uterine lining. The words used and the way it has been described have made it seem like women are less important and are useless in the process of reproduction. Where as the female reproduction is talked about in a derogatory way, the male reproduction system is praised in the scientific world. Some scientist describe the maturation of sperm as, “the mechanisms which guide the remarkable cellular transformation from spermatid to mature sperm remain uncertain…Perhaps the most amazing characteristics of...
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