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The Sons veto and survival are set in very different times. How far are each women’s actions governed by social expectations of women in each period?

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Becca Elisa The Sons veto and survival are set in very different times. How far are each women's actions governed by social expectations of women in each period? Thomas Hardy's 'The Sons Veto' was written and set in 1891 when the expectations of women, were very different to how they are today. Women were expected to be domestic, to cook and clean so therefore to have no job or income of their own. They were to be completely reliant on their husband's money. Their role in life was to produce a male heir. Women had no vote and no power over anything important. They were to dress formally with hardly any skin showing. They rarely had a formal education, men always got the priority. When 'Survival' was written in the 1950's conditions for women had not changed drastically. Society recognised two types of women. The meek, mild domestic homely type and the tarty, blond popular kind. Women were still thought to be weak and unable to last long under tough conditions. They were not supposed to be self confident, and men still took a leading role. The main difference between 'The Son's Veto' and 'Survival' is that Sophy lived up to her expectations and didn't stand up for herself. She did as she was told and was very docile and so never made a fuss. Alice on the other hand was very different but at first came over as the same. Her mother described her as a mouse and this gives us the impression of her being quiet and obedient. ...read more.


She wants to see him but she would feel guilty about it because of the way she is governed by society. " She affected to sew but her eyes never left the street." " Between ten and eleven, the desired wagon, now unladen, reappeared on its return journey." She is out so early in the morning because she is desperate to catch a glimpse of Sam. The word desired shows that this is the wagon she was waiting for while she was pretending to sew. It is obviously the wagon belonging to Sam. She admits to Sam that she longs for her home back in Albrickham and that she is terribly unhappy. "Yes Sam I long for home-our home!" But she can't have it because society and Randolph forbids it. Sophy shows signs of having been with high-class people to long. When asked if her son goes to a local school she replies, "O no! Not in one of those retched holes! At a public school-one of the most distinguished in England." She has adopted a slightly snobbish personality because the local school would not be good enough. She denies however being a lady. She also realises that Randolph's being a gentleman will present problems for her. "No, I am not a lady, I never shall be. But he's a gentleman, and that-makes it-O how difficult for me!" Alice on the other hand would not let anything stand in her way. She pleaded with Randolf to let her re-marry to Sam. At first he is interested to hear that his mother wishes to re-marry. ...read more.


She gives them imaginary newspaper headlines to give them an idea of what will happen. "GIRL-WIFE IN DOOM ROCKET, WOMAN'S SPACEWRECK ORDEAL, that sort of thing." She uses the word girl because it makes her sound more fragile, innocent and more of a victim. "Trapped in their living space, a girl and fifteen men now wheel helplessly around the planet Mars." She refers to them as men. This makes them look like bullies around this little girl. She uses the stereotypical view of women to her advantage. "I am a woman, therefore my position is romantic, so I am young, glamorous beautiful..." She seems to be a bit bigheaded. "I am a heroine" She sees herself as being far more important than these men. "All of you are just men, hulks like the ship" She wins them over and they all sit astonished at what a little woman has just said. A pathetic housewife, weak and harmless had just stopped all of them in their tracks. Alice is not governed by society's rules for women at all. She has just proved that. "There was silence in the room as she finished speaking. Most of the faces showed the astonishment of men ferociously attacked by a Pekinese, and at a loss for suitable comment." She is described as a Pekinese, because they look cute and harmless but are fierce and vicious really. Alice turns out to be the only one left on the ship. What does that say about society's expectations of women? Out of fifteen men and one woman she wins, she survives. Alice is not governed by society in any way shape or form. She is the exact opposite of Sophy who let her life be run the way men and society assumed it should be. ...read more.

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