The Hidden Message
A male would try to control the unknown, relating to crisis of representation, the male is intellectual, he fears the superstition, using that he tries to conquer the “unknown” part of the women. On the other hand the women is the one who accepts the unknown, she embraces it, causing the male role to tremble in fear. Since men try to control the unknown, and women embrace it, the two characters contradict each other leading into a sad consequence. Wide Sargasso Sea, tells a story about a girl named Antoinette, a beautiful young woman, whose life becomes a nightmare.
The story starts when she was a young girl, talking about the poverty she lives in and the way her neighbors treated her. She was isolated, she had no friends and throughout her life she is driven to become mad due to the environment she lives in. In the middle of the story, Mr. Rochester and Antoinette marry and move to jungle, to a new house with new servants. Mr. Rochester is placed in an uncomfortable environment that has a jungle, pestering bugs, and neighbors that try and deceit him by telling horrible thing about Antoinette.
The structure of knowledge implies that males, try to conquer the unknown, it is a gender role of how men act, very stereotypical. So what Mr. Rochester uses is displacement (psychological expression), he tries to control Antoinette because he cannot control the jungle, by changing Antoinette’s name to Bertha. Later on Antoinette becomes the unknown, she is not controllable, and she is driven crazy due to the environment. Everyone is telling lies about her which confuses Mr. Rochester, eventually shattering the marriage. Here again the author implies that this story is a cultural production.
Instead of women having been blamed for the marriage, it is the man who cannot trust his wife, and eventually shatters it himself by having an affair. “The Yellow Paper”, represents all the women during that time which was in the 1890’s. the main character has no name, she is the representation of all women. The short story clearly says on the six’s line “John is practical in the extreme. He has no patience with faith, and an intense horror of superstition. ” John is a physician, he should be practical. The married couple move to a colonial mansion for John’s wife to recover from a unknown illness.
As told so far the crisis of narrative, male and female play gender roles perfectly. The male is an intellectual, while the wife contains an unknown illness, which later on becomes terrifying. As days pass, John treats his wife saying that she is getting better and that with the medicine that he supplies she will get better, however, she does not get better her hallucination on the yellow wallpaper improves every day. Relating to structure of knowledge, John tries to control the unknown his wife’s illness, and as days past the disturbing yellow wallpaper becomes less annoying and actually interests her.
She is accepting the unknown, while John wants to treat her, drive the unknown away with science. Another culture production that goes against the stereotypical thought of that time, the wife says that she needs to go out and move and work, however at that times women were to lay in bed and relax to become healthy, while men were to move more and exercise to become healthy. Jane Eyre; however, comes up with an alternative happy ending then a miserable one compared to the two stories. Throughout the movie Mr. Rochester tries to control Jane; Mr.
Rochester representing the structure of knowledge, however he fails to control her and Jane runs away from him in the middle of the movie. Jane is headed to a place far from Mr. Rochester, a place she does not even know, Jane shows that she is accepting the unknown; by wandering off to an unknown place. The movie Jane Eyre is a reproduction, it uses the idea that the man and women break up, suffering from each other’s absence, then, searching for the love they once had, resulting the two to come together and living happily ever after.
Even though the two characters represent the structure of knowledge, and the crisis of representation, the author tells that love can end in a happy way, even with the stereotypical gender roles involved. Each of these authors are trying to send out a new message that contradicts the belief at the time. Everything should not be blamed upon the women, either men share the equal amount of fallacy, or sometimes it may be the males fault.
Fortunately, men and women have the equal rights, however at that time only men had the rights, women were the ones to be blamed for. In contemporary situation, one can relate this problem in earning jobs in a company. Usually the people who hire the people are males, and consider males to be more efficient worker compared to females, when females can do the same work or even better. Theses stereotypical gender roles must come to an end and people should look at a person equally whether it is a marriage or a job.