Woman in the 19th Century

Topics: Marriage, Love, Woman Pages: 3 (1169 words) Published: October 8, 1999
In her essay Woman in the Nineteenth Century, Margaret Fuller discusses the state of marriage in America during the 1800‘s. She is a victim of her own knowledge, and is literally considered ugly because of her wisdom. She feels that if certain stereotypes can be broken down, women can have the respect of men intellectually, physically, and emotionally. She explains why some of the inequalities exist in marriages around her. Fuller feels that once women are accepted as equals, men and women will be able achieve a true love not yet know to the people of the world. Fuller personifies what is wrong with the thoughts of people in nineteenth century society. She is a well-educated, attractive woman and yet, in America she is considered unmarriageable because of the unintended intimidation her knowledge brings forth. She can't understand why men would not want to find a woman with whom they can carry on an intelligent, meaningful conversation and still be physically attracted to. She knows that once this inferiority complex is gotten past, women will start to excel in all different fields. My interpretation is that Fuller feels if women are educated and skilled then they will be able to take care of themselves until the right man comes along. Their discretion will be tenfold, and they will be able to wait for the proverbial "Mr. Right". Fuller gives three wonderful examples of how equality gets broken down in a marriage. The first is the "household partnership"(42), where the man goes off to work and makes a living to support the family, and the woman stays home barefoot and pregnant, takes care of the children and tends to the house. There is a mutual admiration between the husband and wife because they both keep up their end of the bargain. But there is no love built into this relationship. Couples like this are merely supplementing each other's existence, he by working to support her, and her by cooking and cleaning for him. When she states...
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