Yi Rou Zhang Zhang 1 Instructor: Scott Drake
ENGL 101 W
April 1, 2013
Search for Identity in “Boys and Girls” In Alice Munro’s “Boys and Girls”, she tells us a story about a young girl’s rebellion to the womanhood prescribed by a society which has stereotyped views toward both sexes’ roles and identity in society. The story takes place in the 1940s when women have not gained so much equal rights as today, and they are still perceived as attached to males. The story is set is a fox family of Jubilee, Ontario, Canada, a rural area and the point of view of this story is first person “I”. The narrator is the female protagonist whose name has never appeared in the story directly, which symbolizes her lack of identity in a patriarchal society compared with boy children. There is a character whose name is given to us, the narrator’s brother with the name of Laird, meaning Lord in the Scottish language. The choice of name can truthfully reflect women’s role and social position at that time as well as men’s priorities in a way. Although women had no identity or social position at time, they are just the angel in the house as what they are expected to do, the narrator has never accepted this position and this unfairness easily and satisfactorily. She rebelled against those expectations the society had put on women. She tried hard to search for her identity in the society, to be “more that just a girl”. The search of identity is the major theme of Zhang 2 this little story, and such search can be best reflected on the narrator but also on her little brother. Here, the author of this thesis will try to analyze the respective process of their search, and the results for search of identity will not be the same because of the difference in gender roles. The narrator’s search for identity can better be represented in the following scenes....
Cited: Munro, Alice. “Boys and Girls”. Dance of the Happy Shades. Toronto: Penguin Books, 1968. 113-130. Print.
I would like to appreciate my friends James Qi and Victor Huang to correct my grammatical errors and spelling mistakes.
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