The feminization Movement


Final Essay


(Topic #4)


Assignment Presented for the Course:


Literary Themes: Art and Society


603-103-04 section


In the winter semester, 2004


Women have always been trapped in a stereotypical world where they are viewed as being inferior to men. In the last century there has been a strong feminist movement working to overturn this idea of today’s women. This hypothesis can be considered in the novel “The Awakening”, written by Kate Chopin, and also in the film “Thelma and Louise” directed by Ridley Scott. Both the movie and the novel demonstrate how women are victims of this patriarchal society we live in and manage quite well to turn many stereotypes built around them upside down. All three women feel trapped; in order to free themselves out from this stereotype they revolt against society, take sacrifices and by overcoming men who is the main obstacle to their freedom. This is illustrated trough out the film and the novel by the use, dialogue, images, metaphor and other elements.


Pressured by a stereotype could easily lead to unusual behaviors and actions to prove to himself and society that such a generalization should be associated to him or her, therefore will do anything to prove society wrong. These women reverse the stereotype that women are weak by breaking the normal norms of society. Edna Pontellier leaves her husband Léonce and kids and has an affair. Having an affair with other men in her time was unacceptable and unspoken therefore she breaks the norm of society. Thelma commits a crime by robbing a store. Committing a crime coming from a woman is something that is not accepted by both gender, but from our society’s point of view, the fact that it is woman is very shocking but also unacceptable since women are not suppose to be criminals like man. Thelma has an affair with a handsome young man. This is an unacceptable act in our society; therefore once again this is another example of women breaking the norms by revolting against society, “Thelma & Louise, there is still a real hunger for all of the basic elements of those classic movies of rebellion against society, but translated this time into women’s term” (Art and Society, 1991). Since women are often pressured since they are trapped in a stereotype, they will sometimes do things that are not accepted by society specially coming from a woman.


In the early 20th century woman had to overcome a main obstacle in order to gain their freedom. Men were the only thing preventing them of achieving their goals. Their role was a huge factor in the feminist revolution. In consequence to men’s behavior, the more pressure women were, the more aggravated they will become. Léonce Pontellier, Edna’s husband spends most of his time away from home on business. He is obsessed with making money and acquiring expensive possessions for his home. Even though he is extremely nice with her, the fact that he pays more attention to his business life than his love life, this behavior will lead to Edna’s rebellion against him. Thelma and Louise get arrested by a cop and by being wiser, they find a way to lock him up in the trunk of his own car. That example demonstrates that when men comes to stop a woman that is trying to achieve her goal of being free, will do anything to overcome that obstacle. Louise shots a man in the head and kills him in the parking lot because he tried to rape her friend. In that example we see once again that women that are trying to be free and running away from their trap lives will do the extreme thing to overcome whatever comes against them and also demonstrated as a revenge to men. In Thelma and Louise, in revenge of what women our days are going trough, they blow up a man’s truck because he was impolite towards women. “Huge tractor-trailer trucks speed down the high way…These images make it clear that Thelma and Louise are on the lam in a man’s world. (Art and Society, 1991). In the three examples given, we can see that women will do anything to men that will come in her way to stop her. They are fighting for their freedom against men