“Boys And Girls” Analysis

1169 words - 5 pages

Children are more prone to be obedient towards their parental figures (heteronomous obedience) while growing up. In the short story “Boys and Girls” by Alice Munro, life during the twentieth century is portrayed. The narrator, who has portrayed herself as a nameless young girl, struggles for freedom from inequality in her society. The disobedience in “Boys and Girls” is clarified in Erich Fromm’s essay, “Disobedience as a Psychological and Moral Problem (DPMP).” The narrator of “Boys and Girls” goes through different phases of obedience due to her “authoritarian and humanistic conscience” (Fromm 10). Also, by being disobedient she has control of her own authorities. “Humanistic conscience” ...view middle of the document...

The girl is mannered to help around the house because she aware that it is her parents domain.

Nevertheless, when the little girl is alone, with no supervision of her parents, she is autonomous where she is obedient to herself, and disobedient towards mother and father. As Fromm argues “A person can become free through [the] acts of disobeying” (15), that demonstrates that it can open your eyes and rely on your own powers and have control over one’s own powers . She knew very well that she was forbidden to watch the horses get killed, instead expected to “play around the house” (Munro), like most “girls” are expected to do, due to society. “Do you want to see them shoot Mack” (Munro) said the little girl to her brother. Though she knew she was doing something wrong, and being rebellious she did not care. She did not hesitate to think and took her little brother along to sneakily watch Mack the horse get shot. The young girl does find a way to live by her own procedures and desires, and be disobedient behind her parent’s back, in a way where they will not find out.
Moreover, the little girl lets her “humanistic conscience” which is “the voice present in every human being” (Fromm 10). She lets Flora flee because her humanistic conscience tells her to. But she doesn’t realize that Flora has no place to run to, and will eventually be killed. The little girl “did not make any decision to [open the gate wide], it was just what [she] did” (Munro); it was an action without any knowledge. She went from showing heteronomous obedience to autonomous obedience by disobeying her father’s command to “shut the gate” (Munro). She just felt the need to let Flora free, because of her humanistic conscience. The little girl never deliberately opened the gate; it was inner voice that was telling her “what is human and inhumane” (Fromm 10)

Lastly, psychological comforts of obedience are safety, security, and to make one feel strong. The girl is aware that there is no home for her elsewhere. The girl herself has no place to run to. After Laird, her younger brother tells the mother and father “...It was her fault Flora got away” (Munro), she comes to reality that what her parents tell her to do is for her own and the good of the family. She will not be safe and protected. For example, when the narrator says: “To my shame, tears...

Find Another Essay On “Boys and Girls” Analysis

Alice Munro’s short story, Boys and Girls

865 words - 4 pages A women’s place is in the kitchen, cooking dinner or cleaning. These words will certainly provoke some strong emotions if spoken today, but forty or fifty years ago this was considered an acceptable social norm. Alice Munro’s short story, “Boys and Girls”, examines the life of a young girl, and chronicles the effect that her parents, the influence of friends and family, and key events in her childhood, have on her transformation into a young

"Why Do Boys and Girls Behave Differently"

558 words - 2 pages "Why Do Boys and Girls Behave Differently"The question of what influences differences in the two genders is not likely to have an answer in the near future. Each expert has different conclusions. They feel that this question can change the structure of society if it were answered. Both sides feel their opinions are correct. Scientists will have to conduct many experiments before there is proof for either argument.For example, one expert believes

Elementary Education and Gender: Do Boys and Girls Learn Differently?

1678 words - 7 pages Introduction Boys and girls learn differently, this is something everyone is an elementary school classroom and everyone who plans on teaching knows that. Teachers strive to help their students in any way possible and current research indicates that this should include accommodating for the gender of your student. According to Ponitz et al. (2009), “…the first 2 years of elementary school have been characterized as a ‘critical period’ in early

Growth Rate and Development in Boys and Girls

1369 words - 5 pages Introduction Over the years boys and girls grow at a constant pace, which is considered to be “normal.” There are many factors that influence a child’s height, such as their gender, genetics, nutrition, physical activity, present health problems, etc. Evidently, “Normal” growth does not have an exact approximation by how much a child grows but explains what factors influence a normal growth rate. These factors include healthy eating

The Relationship between Height and Weight of Boys and Girls

1466 words - 6 pages The Relationship between Height and Weight of Boys and Girls Recently due to the media and the government the weight of children has been discussed. It is believed that children are now becoming obese and are now more overweight than children in the past. This had led to public becoming worried about the health of the future generation because there is currently an increase in the number of coronary heart diseases

Pink is for Girls and Blue is for Boys

1502 words - 6 pages blue with boys come from? Why is Barbie considered a girls toy and Lego considered a boys toy? This essay will discuss how toy manufacturers reflect gender stereotypes through design and advertising of toys and how these gendered toys impact socialization. It is important to understand how toys perpetuate sex role stereotypes in order to become better informed consumers in a convoluted, ad-centric world. Gender Marketing by Color The most visually

The Boys and Girls Club of Weber-Davis

2411 words - 10 pages they have or haven’t been doing at home, and what homework they actually need to get done. Healthy Lifestyles is a big part of the national boys and girls clubs organization and even our local club because it’s a big reason why kids choose to come back everyday and want to use our facility. Our hope with doing programs associated to healthy lifestyles is not only to have fun, but to adopt a healthy diet, healthy lifestyle, and lifelong

Girls Versus Boys: Toys and Gender Role Socialization

1762 words - 7 pages “What? A boy playing with Barbie dolls? That’s messed up man. Only girls play with dolls. Everyone knows that!” This is an answer from Cavin, seven years old, when asked what he thought about boys playing with Barbie dolls. Listening to these words can make one realize that even from a young age, children have been strongly impacted by gender through society. According to sociologist James M. Henslin, gender is “the behaviors and attitudes that

Pink is for Girls and Blue is for Boys

2738 words - 11 pages putting them in a box with no headroom to grow into creative, diversified, unique individuals. Cultural stereotypes impede children from reaching their full potential. It restricts them by setting unreasonable standards about what is socially acceptable for girls and boys. If we indeed live in a progressive, modern world where men and women are equals, how do archaic gender stereotypes continue to live on? We must assume that toys have some role

Doing Gender - How Society Creates Differences Between Girls and Boys

1823 words - 7 pages In this essay I discuss that "doing gender means creating differences between girls and boys and women and men...." (West & Zimmerman 2002:13) I am concentrating on the female perspective, how societyputs forth expectations of what is 'natural' or biological even though, in some cases, it can be quite demeaning and degrading. I am using some examples from the local media and also a few childhoodexperiences that have helped me to now strongly

Gender Roles in Alice Munro’s Boys and Girls

1474 words - 6 pages while the man would go out and look for work to provide money for his family. Although the intensity of gender roles has changed, it still exists. In Alice Munro’s short story “Boys and Girls”, the author explains the transition from being a tomboy girl to becoming a woman. The protagonist is sceptical about becoming a young woman; she would much rather work at the farm with her father. When he would ask her to complete a task, it would get

Similar Essays

Alice Munro's "Boys And Girls" Essay

1034 words - 4 pages Alice Munro's short story, 'Boys and Girls,' has a very interesting detail written into it. The narrator's brother is named Laird, which was carefully chosen by the author. Laird is a synonym for lord, which plays a important role in a story where a young girl has society's unwritten rules forced upon her. At the time of the story, society did not consider men and women equal. The name symbolized how the male child was superior in the parents

"Boys And Girls" Relationship Essay

593 words - 2 pages Being a girl trying to experience childhood, the girl in "Boys and Girls" was very restricted in finding out who she is, because of her dad's expectations. Perhaps because of the way he was raised, he made judgments on her before she had even done anything wrong (or 'girly', in his eyes). Before the day she let the horse out, her father seemed to be waiting for the day when she would slip. It was as if he expected her to let the horse out before

Girls And Boys, How Are They Different?

541 words - 3 pages GIRLS AND BOYS: HOW ARE THEY DIFFERENT? Gender is such an important factor in today's society. It shapes how we feel and how we act. Thus, this makes people have certain stereotypes about each other that sometimes may not be true. Traditionally, girls are more submissive, dependent, emotional, cooperative, and sensitive. Boys on the other hand are dominant, independent, rational, analytical, and brave. Now of course these notions are not

Girls And Delinquency: Different From Boys?

2358 words - 9 pages , Chiancone, & Whitworth, 2008). Do females follow the same pathways as males in delinquency, do they suffer the same conduct disorders, and is their aggression caused by the same factors as males?In the 1990's a major surge of girls' arrests brought the subject of female juvenile delinquents and the crimes that they commit to the country's attention. Girls' arrest rates for some crimes increased faster than those for boys (Zahn, Hawkins, Chiancone