Compare and contrast the way the historical diners in ‘Top Girls’ and the female characters in ‘Spies’ are shown to be oppressed. How far do you agree with the opinion that despite their efforts they all remain oppressed?
In this essay I will be comparing and contrasting how I think the way that the Historical Diners and the Female characters in Spies are oppressed and that despite their efforts they all remain oppressed. In my opinion I think that most of the Historical Diners in Top Girls and the female characters in Spies are continually oppressed despite their efforts for freedom and equality, this could be being oppressed by men or society’s Diners in Top Girls and the female characters in Spies are shown to be oppressed and how opinion of what they should do or be. However some of the women manage to break free of oppression but only after enduring it for years.
My first example of the Historical Diners in Act 1 Scene 1 is Pope Joan; she is seen as a ‘Top Girl’ because she became arguably one of the most powerful people in the world when she was in control of the papacy in the early middle ages but behind the tale shows a story of oppression: for instance Joan was not able as a female to enter a library to study and was forced to dress as a man in order to extend her knowledge; she was only respected enough to become Pope because she was believed to be a man not because of her intelligence. My final point is that when Pope Joan fell pregnant she was forced to hide the fact she was expecting and when she did give birth she and the child were killed by the procession, with one cardinal going so far as to call the baby the ‘Antichrist’. This out of all the historical diner’s stories I will describe is the most poignant story of oppression of all because it ends with the death of Pope Joan just because of the fact she would not abide by society's expectation of her to become an uneducated housewife and decided to further herself intellectually as a woman.