Gender Issues In The Story "Boys And Girls" By Alice Munro

864 words - 3 pages

Through the children in the story "Boys and Girls" by Alice Murno we see how preconceived gender roles effect young children. When looking at gender roles it is interesting to see how the roles of women and men effect the outlook of our children. Working with children I see that gender issues still exist, for example parents persuade their sons to play sports and their daughters to play with dolls, and heaven forbid if either takes a liking the opposite genders perceived role. A boy who plays with dolls is looked at as a sissy and a girl who plays football is looked at as a tomboy. This can be seen in the story "Boys and Girls" by Alice Murno.The young girl in the story looks up to her father. The father in the story is Fox Farmer, strong, a hard worker that has an exciting yet dangerous job. The little girl is excited by this and loves to spend time helping him; her chores include giving the foxes water and cutting branches to be used to give the foxes shade. The little girl feels "Work done out doors, and in my fathers service, was ritualistically important." Her father refers to her has one of his "hired men" around friends, this makes her happy to be accepted as one of the guys.Although the girl does love her mother she feels the jobs of a housewife are boring and not something she wants to do. "It seemed to me that work in the house was endless, dreary and peculiarly depressing. " Her chores given by her mother differed greatly from the ones of her father "I was given jobs to do and I would sit at the table peeling peaches that had been soaked in hot water, or cutting up onions, my eyes smarting and steaming. " The young girl was quick to get out of such tasks "As soon as I was done I ran out of the house, trying to get out of earshot before my mother thought of what she wanted me to do next".The girl comes to have an uneasy feeling about how her parents feel about her and her brother after over hearing a conversation between them. "Wait till Laird gets a little bigger, then you'll have some real help", was her help not good enough? "And I could use more help in the house", was she going to be forced to do women's work when she knew she could do...

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