concept of marriage in 19th century

Topics: Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Marriage, 19th century Pages: 4 (1659 words) Published: October 1, 2013
Concept of marriage in 19th Century.

Position of women in the 19th century was certainly different from today. But what makes it interesting is the amount of variation from now and then. Today women are equivalent to men and can perform any task, take up any occupation, they have that right to choose their husband, divorce them, they can decide whether they want to have children, and also have inheritance rights. But back then in the 19th century these rights were alien to women, they were deprived of them rather they were at a worse category. Women were not measured equivalent to men, they were anticipated to be docile and delicate, someone who persistently required assistance and supervision. Whilst women were appointed the subordinate position to men, men enjoyed all lavishes, they could marry whoever, leave them, marry another, they had right to force them into sexual relationships, he could imprison her if she dared to oppose to his cruelties. The husband had right over all her inheritance; he could spend it wherever he wished to, even on prostitution. Men of that time never permitted their wives leave the houses unaccompanied, they were expected to stay at home and work like maids, women who were seen in the streets unaided were considered to be harlots. Women had no alternative to oppose to the disrespect, divorce was not even an option for them, and they had minimal rights and were treated next to animals. As women had no liberty, marriage came as a bigger confinement over them. History is forever reflected in its period’s literature; writers of 19th century focused on the biased behavior of the society and raised its vote against the injustice towards women. Feminism was prominent through this Victorian age literature. Some female writes like Kate Chopin, Katherine Mansfield and Charlotte Perkins Gilman explored the themes of female position and the notion of marriage during that time. Though all these three writes elaborate on the theme of marriage,...
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