Comment on the Relationship Between Man and Woman in a Woman on a Roof

Topics: Social class, Working class, Man Pages: 5 (1604 words) Published: July 21, 2013
Contents

Abstract…………………………………………………….……………………….i 1 Introduction……………………………………………………………………..….1 2 Different Figures Depicted in the Novel ………………………………………… 1 2.1 The sunbathing woman..........................................................................................1 2.2 Harry....................................................................................................................1-2 2.3 Stanley...………………………………………………………………………… 2 2.4 Tom.………………………………………………………………………………2 3 The Relationship between Man and Woman in the Story……………………..3-4 4 Conclusion……………………………………………………………………….4 Bibliography……………………………………………………………………….5

Comment on the Relationship between Man and Woman in A Woman on a Roof

    Abstract: Doris Lessing, one of the most famous and successful female writers in the world, depicts vividly several figures in her novel A Woman on a Roof – Harry, Stanley, Tom and the sunbathing woman on a roof. Simple as it is, it’s indeed an excellent novel. It has long been a contentious topic when it comes to the relationship between the man and woman in the novel and people may come up with various ideas for this topic. However, it’s widely accepted that these figures represent different the conflict between different social statues – the working class and the leisure class. And even three of the man workers differ from each other as well. Further study will enable us to have more understanding of them.

Key Words: A Woman on a Roof; different social statues;working class;leisure class

1 Introduction

The story takes place during the hot summer in London. Three men were working on the roof and saw one woman wearing a red bikini who was sunbathing on the roof. The naked body of the woman had become the focus of their attention and the object for staring during the hot summer days. In this short story, Lessing depicts vividly several successful figures – three working men and a sunbathing woman. The sunbathing woman lied on the roof, thus becoming the observing object of the men workers. So they tried every means to catch her attention but received only the woman’s arrogance and indifference. Three of them are at different ages— Harry, about 45 years old; Stanley, just married; Tom, 17 years old. Three men are on behalf of the three stages: adolescence, youth and middle-aged man. Their views and expectations to woman are also different. The description of the woman's body there has appeared many times, very meticulous. What’s more, every description is starting from the point of view of three men revealing their different psychological reactions.

2 Different Figures Depicted in the Novel

2.1 The sunbathing woman

Undoubtedly, the woman who took sunbathing on the roof is the one of the protagonists in the novel. When first appearing at the beginning of the story, she impressed the workers as well as the readers greatly with her dressing—wearing a red bikini and appeared nearly naked. It’s no wander that the three working men focused on her since she was indeed very sexy and attractive. However, whatever the men workers did to catch her attention, she just turned a blind eye to them. Her arrogance, indifference, and prejudice reflect the social statues of her and people the like.

2.2 Harry

Harry is the oldest worker of them, and compared with Stanley, who had just got married and Tom, who is just 17, he is more experienced. However, when seeing the nearly-naked sunbathing woman on the roof, he couldn’t help teasing her. For example, when talked to Stanley, he said, “she being married her man would not like her to do so.”(王守仁,2011:220) Maybe this sentence enables the readers to have a good understanding of Harry—not well educated and frivolous. On the other hand, we can also see the experienced worker is wise and self-control since he quitted in time when confronted with the woman’s indifference and arrogance.

2.3 Stanley

In...

Bibliography: 1. Doris Lessing, A Woman on a Roof, Harvard University Press,1988
2. 王守仁 《英国文学选读》,北京,高等教育出版社,2011(3):220
3. 王守仁 《英国文学选读》,北京,高等教育出版社,2011(3):218
4. 王守仁 《英国文学选读》,北京,高等教育出版社,2011(3):223
5. 林玉鹏 《屋顶丽人的弗洛伊德人格结构理论分析》,合肥工业大学学报,2008年8月
6. 参考网址:《屋顶丽人的主题》http://zhidao.baidu.com/question/210695878
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