Gwen Harwood Gender Analysis


The patriarchy of the society within the context of which poet Gwen Harwood constructed her poetry, is observed, sometimes criticized and often challenged in the collection of poems found in the text 'Gwen Harwood, Selected Poems'. The representation of the images of men, women and gender differences to which a society consciously or unconsciously subscribes are captured through her writings. Harwoods construction of the poems 'Prize Giving' and 'Night Thoughts: Baby & Demon' exemplify some of the techniques used by the poet in illustrating the tendency of society to categorize the roles and expectations of the male and female. In focusing on the egotistic values of the stereotypical male ...

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roles and expectations to each gender.
In 'Prize-Giving' the arrogance and self-importance of the central character, Professor Eisenbart, illuminates the distinction and 'hierarchy' of which males are heralds of in a patriarchal society. When asked to attend a girl schools award ceremony as an 'honoured guest' the professor
'rudely declined; but from indifference agreed, when pressed with dry scholastic jokes, to change his mind, to grace their humble platform'.
The utilization of submissive language in describing the female gender mirrors the powerful, assertive words in describing the Professor. By placing the male gender on a higher grounding, this represents the way in which the patriarchal society favours this gender over the disempowered and ignorant female.

The use of metaphor in placing the headmistress and the girls in the same levels as birds and insects suggest the deprivation of the female gender in equating them to less than human. The presentation of these ...

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Added: 2/8/2007 10:40:44 PM
Category: Miscellaneous
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1101
Pages: 5

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