Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (2023)

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The breakup of strong female figures in literature

Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (1)

Ashmika A

March 6, 2019

kIlling Eve, La maravillosa Sra. Maisel, Orphan Black, La leyenda de Korra, Alias ​​​​Grace, Orange Is The New Black, Big Little Lies.I could name more, many more if you're looking for shows that are female-centric or female-driven or feature strong female characters. movies too;ravine boysSafeena was exceptionally tough. But books?

Don't get me wrong, there are literally thousands of them.Books with strong female characters, hundreds withfemale protagonists– written by male and female writers throughout the centuries. But why aren't they on the tip of my tongue?

To be fair, some of these shows have been mentioned above.they arebased on booksaka grace,of the great Margaret Atwood, it was a very interesting read, as well asThe Servant's Story.Despite the undeniable lack of strong female characters in current fiction compared to male ones, world literaturetimegave us a lineup of magnificently tenacious women who inspire us across the pages and through the ages. be the revolutionaryVictorian English Womenbreaking the rampant patriarchy of the 19th centuryºcentury, the violentafrican american womenshake off racial and gender discrimination in a world dominated by men or in our own resilient worldindian womenwho challenge male hegemony and all that it entails. Bronte's Jane Eyre, Alice Walker's Celie, Arundhati Roy's Ammu – they are all strong, nuanced and realistic female characters, powerful and three-dimensional. But what makes them strong?

What do you think when I say "strong female character"? I always envision a strong-willed, strong-willed, individualistic woman, someone who radically stands up for herself and survives adversity despite the restrictive nature of her public and private world. Breaking the conventional boundaries of gender, society, and race, she strives to find an identity that is not limited solely to the traditional roles of mother, wife, and daughter.

In the work of Toni MorrisonSula,The protagonist Sula Peace eschews socially constructed notions of what it means to be a woman, challenges the traditional power structure of Caucasian and African-American communities, and protests the racial and gender oppression imposed on black women because of their roles and gender stereotypes. expected. Sula's radical streak is evident early in the book when she decides to cut off the end of her own finger to scare off four boys who plan to harass her and her friend Nel on their way home from school. . "If I can do this to myself, what do you think I could do to you?", she says. By Lois Tyson's definition of a liberated woman, Sula "discovered her abilities, knew what she needed and went after it."femaleCharacter. But is Sula a strong character? What does it mean to be strong? What is the difference between a strong female character and a strong male character, if any?

Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (3)

Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (4)

In fiction, a strong character is usually the one who drives the plot of the story. You have a solid core of identity, of integrity, whether you realize it or not. They are capable of true self-knowledge, have the ability to face and learn from difficulties, and can take responsibility, or at least be aware of their thoughts and actions. You are the most heard voice of the novel. Strong characters are full of potential and possibilities. They can be good guys, bad guys, protagonists, antagonists, or anything in between.

Conversely, a weak character exists at the edges, not necessarily at the edges of the story, but of his own character. They are and will not come to their senses during the story, they are vague in their actions and intentions, and they are less likely to accept or prepare for challenges. A weak character is mired in constant indecision and cannot change. They are forgetful, expendable.

The main difference between a strong character and a weak one is that the former is well developed and adds breadth and depth to the story. Without them, the plot is weak, the story stagnates. Strong characters in literature are often complex and full of personality, flaws, quirks, and interests. They have a tasty past and a fruitful future, which makes every reader want to delve into every little detail about them so that they can get a complete and realistic overview of the present of the story.

Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (5)

Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (6)

It is no secret that there is a lack of diversity and representation in the publishing industry not only in India but across the globe. That kind of gender bias is terrible in an industry that would collapse without women, be they writers, readers, or editors. The least you can do is highlight the writers and stories and give them good PR and marketing. It is not enough to realize that women are just as physically capable, mentally strong, intelligent, humorous, financially astute, and independent as men, and sometimes even more capable.

21calleThe literature of the century must work towards a more egalitarian and realistic representation of women in literature. Today's literary landscape needs diverse books featuring modern female figures of all skin colors, ethnic groups, religions and sexualities, all backgrounds, nationalities, world views and age groups. The world is full of strong and complex women. Today's literature must be characteristic of these women, in thought, in faith and in body.

Both male and female writers should strive to cast strong, well-rounded female characters for leading roles in fiction, characters who can represent and express who we are, who we were, or who we want to be, or don't want to be. . And this should be done in the most organic way possible.

Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (7)

Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (8)

In literary nonfiction, a strong female character can act as a vessel for the author's thoughts and beliefs. But in fiction, it is absolutely imperative that a character is fully developed and not presented as a pre-planned caricature of an idea, moral, or message. A strong female character in fiction is not a means to an end. It is not a scheme designed to represent the various characteristics of the female psyche, or simply to represent the collective experience of a community in a patriarchal society. What we need in today's literature are strong female characters who not only explore and deconstruct the mythical power of femininity, but who are a private, personal voice, true to their own character. We need them to be strong characters in their own right. We need our writers to stop throwing crumbs around skinny, raw female characters.

Today's male and female writers need to make sure they understand what a "strong character" is before adding "feminine." A strong female character must be unique and true to herself, just as a story must be true to itself, regardless of its setting. For a strong story with a strong female character, the story, the woman, and the character must be strong individually and together. The female character's narrative should fit into and work in symbiosis with the natural narrative arc of the story.

Hopefully by International Women's Day 2020 I'll have some new books with strong female characters on the tip of my tongue.

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Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (9)

Aashmika is a writer from Mumbai. She recently completed her MA in Creative Writing from Oxford Brookes University and also has an MA in English Literature from Mithibai College, Mumbai. She is also a belly dancer, which successfully combats her professional introversion. When she's not reading or writing prose or poetry, she watches TV shows. She loves animals, tattoos, nature and drinking.Photosof things.

Aashmika is currently working on her first novel (but don't ask her about it).

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1 comment

  1. Breakdown of strong female figures in literature | RER (13)

    david astor March 6, 2019 at 5:07 p.m.

    Great post and thanks for the link!

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