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The absence of any kind of fundamental economic, social or political rights, like right to property, freedom of speech and expression, right to vote or even the right to seek justice was the bane of the nineteenth and twentieth century woman. These social ills are reflected in the lives of these two women as they struggle to give sound to the incessant chatter of the inner voice throughout the novels.
In the post-war world, when everything and everyone was coming to terms with the trauma of new beginnings; the emergence of a new genre of writing in English signaled the onset of yet another revolution. Writers like Kate Chopin and her women characters were a living example of a colonized race that sought redemption by a deviation from reality, thus, pushing them further into the maws of self-doubt and loathing; furthering them still from the ‘freedom’ of their being. Books like The Awakening portrayed the psychological journey of its female protagonist Edna Pontellier; pre-empting and skillfully projecting the image of the ‘war-torn’ inner self of an American woman in the wake of a new century. Another novel of tangential equivalence in terms of character-depiction is Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh. The female protagonist in this novel Nina Blount is, among the other characters, a depiction of the loss of objective and purpose and the epitome of portrayal of the war-cradled ‘lost generation’. Interestingly, despite having non-intersecting personalities, the women characters in these novels like Nina, Agatha, Edna achieve a ‘vile’ and ‘ridiculous’ status of living because of their loose social conventions. The fallen angels like Chastity are the effeminate-degenerate as they break free from moral restraint, so cleverly put across in the lines “Chastity didn’t feel well, Mrs. Ape. She went below” (VB, 8). The so-called ...Show more


It seems to bear two contrasting meanings within its fold; that of ‘the wild side of nature; the bohemian’ as well as that of ‘isolation and inaccessibility’. This word may be aptly used to…
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English Lit essay example
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