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Compare how Lawrence and Hardy portray the role of a woman in society in their short stories

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Introduction

Pre and post 20th century short story course work Compare how Lawrence and Hardy portray the role of a woman in society in their short stories To answer the question, comparisons between Lawrence's 'Tickets, please' and Hardy's 'The Son's Veto' will be made in terms of the role of the woman in the two short narratives. Analyzing Lawrence and Hardy's use of language and style as well as the social and historical references and attitudes will do this in the different time periods. Historical and social changes between 1885 and 1916 could have reflected the authors or society's ideas for example the suffragettes and world war one. There are similarities and differences within the narratives and the authors and their lives, which may have affected the author's portrayal of the women in their eras. Thomas Hardy was born in Dorset in 1840 and died in 1928. Most of his stories were based in Dorset and were orientated around the lives and traditions of the people that lived in this county. Hardy had deep emotional ties to his lower class values and ways of the countryside where he grew up. ...read more.

Middle

Annie is the heroine of the story as she gets revenge for the group of girls. In The Son's Veto the role of a woman is indicated through the following statements. She is to have no involvement in financial matters, society believed a woman is not someone to be concerned with finance, and this is shown in the following quotation 'She was left with no control over anything that had been her husbands beyond her modest income.' In 'Tickets, please' the women work for a living 'This, the most dangerous tram-service in England, as the authorities themselves declare with pride, is entirely conducted by girls...' (P2). The woman in The Son's Veto had to take care of her appearance '...wasted hours braiding her beautiful hair' illustrates this. References in 'Tickets, please' to the appearance of the women are as follows 'In their ugly blue uniform, skirts up to their knees, shapeless old peaked caps on their heads...' (P5). This seems to suggest society were no longer fixated on a women as a person to be worried about their appearance but to work and earn money. The woman is seen as the person in charge of housework in The Son's Veto and this is shown by the ensuing quotation 'Sophy bought up his meals to him...' ...read more.

Conclusion

and Lawrence writes 'She dressed herself up and went to the fairground.' The main points illustrating Lawrence and Hardy's portrayal of woman in their short stories are the appearance, attitudes towards men and relationships, behaviour, financial status and work in the house. The appearance of the women is different but this could be as Lawrence describes the women when they are in uniform for work. The women have different positions in finance. Both women do work in the house and have similarities in their attitudes towards some aspects of their appearance. The women have different attitudes towards sex and marriage and behave differently and get described differently because of this. It appears that Hardy and Lawrence have portrayed women as they exist and portrayed themselves when they wrote the narratives. Lawrence's portrayal is apt for the time it was created because as he remained in England during the war due to his weak lungs, he witnessed the social evolution, watching as women became much more independent and powerful during the war. And at times he does seem uneasy about women's new social role. Lawrence explores many independent female characters, and portrays them all differently but mainly as stronger and more independent: though in effect getting nowhere, at least they are the ones making the decisions, and through this in fact making progress. ...read more.

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