Fay Weldon: An Equal Opportunity Feminist

1800 words - 8 pages

Fay Weldon, born Franklin Birkinshaw, started out life in a state of ambivalence. She “took out library books as Franklin and read them as Fay” (Weldon). “What I do have to do is be faithful to what I see around me, whether I like it or not. My role is to look at the world, get a true, not an idealized vision of it and hand it over to you in fictional form” (Fay Weldon). This is how Fay Weldon defines her writing. Although the role of women in society has vastly changed in the last fifty years, there is still a great divide amongst the sexes. It is Weldon’s fresh and sophisticated style of writing, alongside her feministic views, that make her novels spectacular.
Weldon writes with a wicked sense of humor and, often times, outrageous plots. Her point of view and narrative style are a unique mix of exaggeration and realism. “Weldon’s interest in the experience of women, her perceptions about their sexuality and friendship, her intelligent view that women’s lives are of necessity different from men's make her a most valuable contemporary novelist for the committed feminist and for the general reader who is curious about women. But Weldon’s novels are appealing even if one does not share her feminist insights” (Krouse).

Weldon takes an objective approach to relationships, but she is not necessarily always on the women’s side. “[...] Weldon does not heavy-handedly use her female characters to hammer out a simplistic thesis about nasty men and victimized women. Through point of view and tone, her vision of women's relationships with men is more satisfyingly complex” (Krouse). In Weldon’s novels, women are not infallible, they make mistakes and are often times found to be at fault. Weldon often portrays the man as the open-minded, responsible, and reliable part of the couple. Weldon aims to show women that with great power comes an even greater responsibility.
Weldon’s heroines have roles other than simply being objects of men’s desires. They want to be equal, or at least they try to be. Her characters are thinking, analyzing and then deciding. “Weldon’s fiction often mirrors the insights of feminist theorists about the nature and situation of women: love does not last, marriage is not happy, motherhood is not serene. Her multiple female characters function particularly well to make convincing a fictional world which indirectly questions many traditional assumptions. The experiences of her characters complement each other and, therefore, validate each other as well” (Krouse).
Though Weldon states that she chose her lifestyle before the height of the feminist movement, she works with topics highly demanded from the woman’s point of view: love, infidelity, oppression, abortion, sexual initiation, divorce, career, stereotype, patriarchy, and motherhood. “A feminist novelist like Fay Weldon is never in any doubt that the relationship between the sexes is primarily a matter of power politics [...] Weldon writes with a light touch that cannot disguise...

Find Another Essay On Fay Weldon: An Equal Opportunity Feminist

"Frost at Midnight" by Samuel Coleridge and "The City of Invention" by Fay Weldon Comparison

597 words - 2 pages Shakespeare has greatly contributed his literacy works to society. The use of “Castle” emphasises its importance over the clustered “houses”.Your imagination has the power to influence the way you think and act. Coleridge and Weldon’s works both change the narrator’s view of life in the end. In Coleridge’s case the narrator wants his child to be free from the imprisoning city, and in Weldon’s case, the narrator convinces the readers that your imagination can be like an imaginary city.Bibliography: Samuel Taylor Coleridge "Frost at Midnight"Fay Weldon "The City of Invention"

The Sphere Essay

904 words - 4 pages life.Hamilton 2 I believe several characters in this movie lived their lives to the fullest and seized the day very well. The first man is Mr. John Keating. To me he was the best character in the movie, simply because he taught the young men what it was to seize the day. Mr. Keating was the first person to ever give the children at Weldon Academy an opportunity to make their own decisions. He made them think about the corrupt surroundings that Weldon

The Hand

1477 words - 6 pages being married to a stranger(56). Colette wanted to show that rushing into things whether for the belief of love or not is putting yourself in someone else’s hands and not your own. “IND AFF” 1.) A lust for the flesh and a desire for unholy things or in other words inordinate affection is the main theme of Fay Weldon’s short story “ IND AFF”. This story of an unfaithfully married

Differentiation between Women's Work and "Real Work" in Munro's "Boys and Girls" and Weldon's "Weekend"

1169 words - 5 pages run, but don't ever let anyone see how hard you work. Expend great amounts of energy but let it seem effortless - as evidenced by Martin's disapproval of what he perceives as Martha's "fretting": "He thought the appearance of martyrdom in the face of guests to be an unforgivable offense" (Weldon 5). Martha enjoys her job outside home because there she is allowed to work and not expected to pretend she isn't working: "She didn't have to smile at

Biography and Critical Analysis of James Weldon Johnson and his work "The Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man"

2261 words - 9 pages were created equal. Yet through the abuse and suppression, the black spirit has always found a way to triumph. In James Weldon Johnson's novel Autobiography of an Ex-Colored Man, written anonymously, James Weldon writes of a bi-racial man who lives the horrible life of a black man. After changing races, he realizes that he was freer when he was black because his sprit and mind triumphed, but his realization came too late. James Weldon Johnson, a

Heart of Darkness

1003 words - 4 pages , helping the Africans, and uttering her name as his a last words. Fay Weldon believes that, "the writers who get a lasting response from the readers are the writers who offer a happy ending through moral development…." In, Heart of Darkness, this statement holds true. Charlie Marlow goes through a period of moral reconciliation throughout the novella. Instances throughout Heart of Darkness show different sides of Charlie Marlow's morals. It is evident that when Marlow has returned to Brussels, that his morals have changed.

Characterization and Irony in Pride and Prejudice

3056 words - 12 pages Atwood in The Handmaid's Tale wrote about misogyny in a dystopia that could not exist, and Jane Austen lived in a time where it did. Prejudice against women was not an uncommon thing. Women were not equal, and she showed it in the novel. The sole purpose of the women was to acquire a husband. This put women down and was demeaning to them, but this is how it was. Life was not good without a husband, because there would be no land or money to

Adam and Eve: Breaking the Social Construct With John Milton's Paradise Lost

1530 words - 6 pages between male and female; they are simply human. Although the question of gender hierarchy may never be aptly answered, Milton in Paradise Lost states his controversial estimation of the ideal gender relationship – equality. Works Cited Milton, John. Paradise Lost. Ed. Gordon Teskey. New York: Norton, W. W. &, 2005. Print. Weldon, Fay. The Life and Loves of a She-Devil. New York: Ballantine, 1985. Print.

Fair Compensation Practices. Johnson & Johnson

581 words - 2 pages MY COMPANY HAS BOTH SECTIONSJohnson & Johnson:The yearly salary of William C. Weldon is $17.55 million dollars. After five years Mr. Weldon will have been paid a total compensation package of $60.08 million. This compensation package includes stocks, bonus and other compensation items. Mr. Weldon has been the CEO for 7 years and has been with the company for 38 years. The average age for CEO's in America is 60.1 years. The vice president and

A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen

947 words - 4 pages Henrik Ibsen, author of one of the greatest drama plays A Doll House, is said this piece of work is a feminist play. Feminism is defined as a “collection of movements aimed at defining, establishing and defending equal political, economic, and social rights and equal opportunities for women”, according to Dictionary.com. Did Ibsen produce A Doll House to be a feminist play? No matter what or how much propaganda feminist have made toward A Doll

The life and accomplishements as well as trials of James Weldon Johnson.

1440 words - 6 pages , "James Weldon Johnson" 78). Even though, he is no longer living, James Weldon Johnson has left much about his contributions to African American literature. He was a writer, diplomat, professor, and editor, who also described himself as a man of letters and a civil rights leader, Johnson was a well-educated man of his time.During his first few years of school he attended, Stanton, which offered blacks an education up to the eight grade. Stanton was

Similar Essays

Hrm Equal Opportunity Policies Can Be Seen As An Attempt To Eradicate Consideration Of Social Differences From Organizational Decision Making Using Bureaucratic Means”

1243 words - 5 pages The primarily responsible for implementing and managing diversity and equality of opportunity in the workplace rests with-in the line managers or the line management of an organization."Equal opportunity policies can be seen as an attempt to eradicate consideration of social differences from organizational decision-making using bureaucratic means" (Liff, 1999)Legislation within the year 1970s, supported by the structure developments within the

Feminist Approaches To Women's Writing Essay

1175 words - 5 pages conflicted faces of feminism?Sure, the feminist lobby group takes a lot of heat for the take a rain check of "Western civilization" (Chambers, 1984). But a society that stayed its chauvinistic route was destined to melt down anyway.Down Among the Women a novel by Fay Weldon begins in the time 1950 and follows the lives of Wanda, her daughter Scarlet, and Scarlet's four friends Sylvia, Jocelyn, Audrey, and Helen. The story follows each of the characters

Ind Aff Theme Analysis

1495 words - 6 pages long. And Fay clearly wants to show us the fact that after so many falls, slips and abuses, she is still overcoming her obstacles and is still standing at the end of each episode. CRITIZISM But if Ms. Weldon fires her cannon from the female vantage point, this feminist student of sexual politics has a tolerant heart for most of the men in her books, even for the womanizers, even for the bounders-- “Nothing happens, and nothing happens, and

A Time Of Prosperous Change Essay

1111 words - 4 pages escarpment, and with every step it was as if she trod on knives; but she thanked him for giving her life and told him she was going.'(239).In both Criticisms the authors use reasoning to justify the use a almost happy ending to the novel. Ericson states 'Strangely enough, I have yet to read a Fay Weldon novel without an almost unbelievably happy ending. Still , the happy ending is usually based on coincidence, fate or supernatural occurrences,. And