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Feminist Characters from Classical English Literature

Protagonist women in the belly of Orthodox Europe! 

The protagonist female characters in world literature have been severely contributed by the English, even during the nineteenth century. Here are a few such examples from classical literature, one must have a glance!

Elizabeth Bennett : Pride of women in Pride and Prejudice

Named “Lizzie” or “Eliza”, Elizabeth Bennett from Jane Austen’s novel ‘Pride and Prejudice’ is one of the fantastic protagonists in the history of English literature. The novel shows how Eliza, a young lady from an aristocratic family of nineteenth century Europe is fighting against the social norm of marrying someone for his wealth and not for love. Eliza was struggling against society to stay even ‘single’, rather than marrying someone against her will, which was indigestible for the society at that period.

Nancy Drew: Mystery and more

Edward Stratemeyer’s iconic mystery-solving female character Nancy Drew is a beautiful example of showcasing a female character not as a symbol of beauty, but as a personification of intelligence and brain! Nancy has a superior level of intellect and a courageous mind with enough physical strength which she uses in solving mysteries and indulging herself to jump into tough circumstances.

Josephine March: The Little Women

Jo March from the novel Little Women, penned by Louisa May Alcott in 1868 is depicted as a confident and strong-willed woman who is outspoken enough to denounce the ‘social order’ of ‘women should be married’. The tomboyish Jo is being seen struggling against the social narratives of defining what women should or shouldn’t do and showcasing herself as a daring and courageous character.

Janie Crawford:Violence and more in Their Eyes Were Watching God

Zora Neale Hurston’s 1937 novel ‘Their Eyes Were Watching God’ is a magnificent work of art, depicting the soft-hearted fighting character of Janie Crawford, who has been harmed brutally, both emotionally and physically in the hands of the people she married. The beauty of the novel and the character is the ‘never losing hope’ attitude that Janie shows to trace out her true love at any cost. Neither the torture nor the successive failures made her stop finding the match of her heart. And finally, the story concludes with her success.

Hester Prynne: Extramarital relationship and more in The Scarlet Letter

The Scarlet Letter, penned by Nathaniel Hawthorne in 1850 depicts an out of the box protagonist female character namely Hester Prynne, who conceived a child due to an extramarital relationship with state personnel and then not only refused by her lover but also convicted for committing such a ‘sin’. The character is sketched as a high-spirited woman who confronts the entire society to dismantle the oppression she was pulled in.

Debapriya Chakraborty

Author is an aspiring creative writer, food-buff and bookworm. Loves to travel, bunks in lesser known bnbs and loves her chai more than anything else. She adds her two cents to every idea and has been a scriber for more than a decade now!
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