Perception toward women and their roles in the novel “The Bell Jar”

Cahyadi, Evelyn (2017) Perception toward women and their roles in the novel “The Bell Jar”. Undergraduate thesis, Widya Mandala Catholic University Surabaya.


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This thesis entitled Perception toward Women and Their Roles in the Novel “The Bell Jar” attempts to answer the following research problems. They are: “How does society perceive woman and their roles to serve?” and “How does Esther Greenwood perceive woman and their roles to serve?” This thesis is a qualitative study in the form of descriptive analysis. The data of this study are taken from a novel entitled The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. The instrument in this study is the writer herself who used feminist literary criticism by Robert DiYanni and feminist existentialism by Simone de Beauvoir as the base theories to analyze the novel. This thesis focuses on the way the characters perceive woman and their roles in the society. The characters’ perception is divided into two parts: the minor characters’ perception which is concluded into society’s perception and the main character, Esther Greenwood’s, perception. The result of each perception is divided into five aspects: beauty standard, sexual double standard, object, marriage, and career. The study found out that Esther’s perceptions of woman in all aspects are contrasted with societal perception. Esther does not like how society treats woman as inferior gender. She has internal conflict to prove herself that men and women are equal, but she does not know how, so she becomes desperate to lose her virginity and starts to show signs of depression. The writer suggests the future research to study other aspects like inner conflict or cause of the protagonist’s mental illness from this novel. The writer also expects the reader of this novel to realize the difference between the perception of woman in the past and in the present, so the reader, especially woman, can be grateful of the privilege they get which are not available for woman in the past. The writer also gives suggestion for teachers who teach literature to analyze the intrinsic elements of literary works first before move to analyze other aspects in the novel to get better understanding of the work.

Item Type: Thesis (Undergraduate)
Department: ["eprint_fieldopt_department_Faculty of Teacher Training and Education" not defined]
Uncontrolled Keywords: Perception, woman, gender roles, The Bell Jar
Subjects: English Education
Divisions: Faculty of Teacher Training and Education > English Education Study Program
Depositing User: Evelyn Cahyadi
Date Deposited: 28 Jul 2017 02:48
Last Modified: 28 Jul 2017 02:48

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