This novel portrays women in a negative way. All of the women except for Effie are corrupt in the novel. They don’t seem to have any important duties or roles throughout the story, but they do the dirty work for the men and participate in illegal and immoral activities such as murder and having affairs.
Sam Spade is a womanizer and thinks of women as people to do things for him and he likes to love them and leave them. It is obvious that he does not like to have relationships or get too close to anyone, so instead he doesn’t treat women the greatest. Spade orders Effie, his secretary, around and is always giving her orders. She lights his cigarettes, takes his phone calls, runs his errands and listens to his problems. He gives her his dirty work to do and she does it all immediately without saying a word or complaining. Spade also uses Brigid to benefit himself. He takes a lot of money from her, not knowing if he is partaking in anything illegal, and agrees to help her. She is portrayed as a liar and can never keep her story straight. She is a murderer, but falls in love with Spade very quickly. He gets information from her to solve the case, she becomes his lover, but in the end he turns her into the police. Finally, there is Iva. She has an affair with her husband’s partner, Spade. Spade pays no attention to Iva after her husband is killed and has a relationship with Brigid. Even though he is never there for her, she is waiting for him at the end of the novel still. I think this shows women as being weak. She puts up with him treating her badly and she cheats on her husband. This portrays women as not having any morals and settling for how men treat them no matter if it is good or bad.
Overall, the novel depicts men as getting all of the women and money. The women murder, cheat and stick with men such as Spade even though they are not appreciated or treated well.
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