Independent Females in Literature

4 April 2015
Examines two strong, independent female characters who defy cultural & sexual restrictions in novel & memoir. “The Scarlet Letter” ( Nathaniel Hawthorne ) & “The Woman Warrior” ( Maxine Hong Kingston )

Nathaniel Hawthorne in The Scarlet Letter and Maxine Hong Kingston in The Woman Warrior: Memoirs of a Girlhood among Ghosts depict strong women struggling to shape themselves beyond the restrictions of convention. Hester Pyrnne and Maxine Hong Kingston seek to forge new social identities which surpass the codes of their respective communities. Relying upon their creative spirit, they are unable to be limited by worn-out societal restrictions for women. They understand that society seeks to impose upon them unreasonable and oppressive conventions. Instead of accepting the power and weight of these conventions, these women are willing to challenge their communities’ petty and destructive centers. In transgressing the too-rigid gender codes which have been ordained for them, Pyrnne…
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