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The six texts represented and compared here are Macbeth, A Streetcar Named Desire, 'Enter Without So Much As Knocking,' 'Katrina,' The Collector and The Great Gatsby.

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Introduction

Year 11 English Literarure By Bonnie Ansems Long Essay Assignment Similarities in texts are often present and can be linked in many ways allowing readers to make comparisons. Although each text is unique in its construction there are similarities in theme, character and setting. The six texts represented and compared here are Macbeth, A Streetcar Named Desire, 'Enter Without So Much As Knocking,' 'Katrina,' The Collector and The Great Gatsby. Representations of men and women in each text will be discussed highlighting their similarities and differences as well as the relationships men and women have with each other. The challenging and reinforcing on my own notions of gender will also be discussed. Macbeth Gender is a major issue in the play Macbeth by Shakespeare representing the different roles portrayed by both men and women. Women during this medieval time were not allowed an education and played a domestic role in the home. The man however was the king of the family with absolute control. In Macbeth the female role of Lady Macbeth demonstrated the opposite of the reader's expectations of a woman in this era. She is portrayed to the reader as very assertive and plays an active and dominant role in her marriage and the plot of the play, not the traditional role of the subjugated wife. ...read more.

Middle

This is portrayed to the reader in the quotes: "Your twin brother's Two-month-old vigour hurts us," and "your bowed legs kicking In defiance of your sickness, your body's wasting." Another interesting point to make is that Katrina's twin would most likely be the best match for organs and blood, and giving her those things would make him a real hero as it may save her life. Katrina's mother is also represented as being fragile and lamenting in the quote, "Your mother grieves already." This poem challenges my notions of gender where women and men are equal as it portrays women as being weaker than men both physically and emotionally. Enter Without So Much as Knocking Another Poem also by Bruce Dawe, in 'Enter So Much As Knocking,' portrays to the reader a typical 50's stereotype of men, women and children. The mother is depicted as being, "one economy-size mum," labelling her as an ordinary stay at home housewife, while the father is described as, "one Anthony Squires-Coolstream-Summerweight Dad", depicting him as the suave business man. The representations of men and women between both of Dawe's poems, is quite different probably due to the difference in theme, characters and setting with 'Katrina' focussing on sadness. The relationship between the husband and wife in 'Katrina' appears to the reader to be closer and more involved, while in this poem it is more removed and divided. ...read more.

Conclusion

The similarities in the two men - Gatsby (from The Great Gatsby) and Clegg (from The Collector), is that they both have immense power and wealth but are unable to use it to fulfill their dreams of being adored by the women they love. The reader feels somewhat sympathetic towards the plight of these two men as they have everything money can buy but still can't have the most important thing in their lives - love! Another character Tom Buchanan is depicted to the reader as being an arrogant, hypocritical bully and is described by Daisy as, "a brute of a man," and as having "two shining arrogant eyes," by Nick. He mistreats women just as Stanley does from A Streetcar Named Desire and the reader responds abhorrently towards them. Although some of the presentations of men in this novel are challenging, there is still a romantic presence associated with the actions of Gatsby, reinforcing my notion that gentlemen do exist. In all of the above texts, representation of men and women in society is evident with similarities and differences apparent between the types of text. The comparisons on gender can be made by the reader together with those of theme, character and setting with definite patterns emerging. Although the reader responds differently to men and women in each text, my notions of gender have generally been challenged, particularly with the domination of males and submissiveness of females evident in characters in all six pieces of text. ...read more.

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