Name Class Date Women in the Societal Shackles The short story "The Chrysanthemums" by John Steinbeck explores the struggle of the women in society for equal treatment. Further there is an exploration of the roles that society has placed upon women that are overly belittling and makes them be regarded as inferior to their male counterparts. In the short narrative the struggle for equality is furthered through the character of Elisa Allen. "The Chrysanthemums" ideally depicts "a strong capable woman kept from personal social and sexual fulfillment by the prevailing conception of a woman's role in a world dominated by men" (Steinbeck (1989) p.306). Through Elisa's experiences and struggles the plight of women in a male-dominated world is aptly highlighted by the author of the piece. This is essentially a world that is Salinas Valley and the chrysanthemums are symbolically used in the narrative to represent the different aspects of femininity that are subjected to male suppression. The chrysanthemums particularly represent Elisa (women) and the unsatisfied forms of life that they lead to the oppression of men. While the flowers are healthy thrive and are lovely-the same could be said of the value that is attached to women in society. They are objectified and respected only for their femininity rather than their contributions to society. All in all the society has placed women in the shadow of men; a form of shackling that suppresses their true potential in the world. Works Cited Steinbeck John. "The Chrysanthemums." Literature and the Writing Process. Ed. Elizabeth McMahan Susan Day and Robert Funk. 2nd ed. New York: Macmillan 1989. 330-6. [...]
Your task is to write a 750-950 word essay on ONE of the three topics listed below. Aim for a 5-paragraph essay structure (introduction with thesis, three or more body paragraphs, and a conclusion). The word count does not include the Works Cited page or formatting. *Incorporate two direct quotes from the literary selection to support your analysis and be sure to use MLA style guidelines and provide citations and a works cited listing with your essay. Please note, no revisions of essays are accepted. Once an essay is graded, the grade is final. Write a critical analysis of one of the works from weeks 3 or 4. *Note: If writing about e.e. cummings, please note that the author does not use uppercase letters when writing his name and in most of his poetry. Please follow his example and use lower case letters when writing his name and when quoting from his poems.