Feminism in Novel Makaan of Paigham Afaqui

Topics: Feminism, Gender, Woman Pages: 5 (1301 words) Published: July 18, 2013

Femisnism in novel Makaan of Paigham Afaqui

Feminist literature, as the name suggests, is based on the principles of feminism, and refers to any literary work that centers on the struggle of a woman for equality, and to be accepted as a human being, before being cast into a gender stereotype. Not all these works follow a direct approach towards this goal of equality. It is only through such media that women believed a change was possible in the way they were perceived in society. Not all feminist literature has been written by women, but also by men who understood women beyond the roles they were expected to fit into, and delved into their psyche to understand their needs and desires. Some works may be fictional, while others may be non fictional. Here, we take a look into the characteristics of feminist literature, and give you a list of some of the many works of this genre that make for a good read if you truly desire to learn extensively about this form of writing and what it stood for.


Feminist literature is identified by the characteristics of the feminist movement. Authors of feminist literature are known to understand and explain the difference between sex and gender. They believe that though a person's sex is predetermined and natural, it is the gender that has been created by society, along with a particular perception about gender roles. Gender roles, they believe, can be altered over time. The predominance of one gender over the other, is a common concept across almost all societies, and the fact that it is not in favor of women is an underlying, yet blatant, characteristic of feminist or women's literature. Here, it is argued that any society that does not provide channels of learning and knowledge to both genders equally is not a complete and impartial society.

Critics argue that there wasn't much difference between male and female authors, and that there was no need to identify a separate class of literature termed as feminist or look for traces of feminism in literature. However, if you read any such work, you will realize how such writers criticized society's andocentric (male-centered) approach, and tried to understand the beliefs and needs of the opposite sex with a subjective, and not an objective, approach. Take for example Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice. The protagonist, Elizabeth Bennett was a woman of her mind. Despite the societal pressure (put on her by her mother) to choose a partner, and to lead a life that was decided for all women, she decided to choose her own path towards what she wanted. And none of this was blatantly approached. She did not put an outward fight, in order to choose her life course. The entire piece of work is subtle, and the only clear characteristic of the protagonist you will notice is her assertiveness. And that is one clear characteristic of the feminist approach toward literature.

Women in literature of the feminist nature are always featured as the protagonist, who, more often than not, do not readily accept the traditional role of women as decided by society. They are ready to make their own decisions, to express this choice of personal decision-making, and are ready to deal with the consequences of these choices, actions, and decisions. Though a daughter, a mother, a sister, or a wife, any piece of feminist literature first deals with a woman as a woman. It is not these relationships, roles, or stereotypes that give these female characters in literature their identity. Their identity is defined by their choices and their beliefs which are then associated with these roles. It is important to note that not all works of feminist literature have happy endings, both for the character, and for the author of the work. Women have been ostracized by society for openly demanding equality, and have had to face several negative consequences of their decision to go against the waves.

Women have been treated as important subjects even in many...
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