Essay about A Sorrowful Woman By Gail Godwin

804 Words Nov 4th, 2015 4 Pages
In the time of stereotypical white picket fences and quaint little American families mental illness were shunned to keep the appearance of a desirable household. Within the large majority of families in the mid-20th century women were pressured by society to fit into the role of household wife. This forced many women to develop mental issues due to isolation and limiting their full potential. In response to these pressing nuances many took drugs in order to uphold appearance. In the story A Sorrowful Woman by Gail Godwin these stereotypes are present and push the wife to limit which tragically results in her death. The pressure to conform to “suburban” stereotypes suppressed the underlying mental issues that many families had to endure during the mid-20th century.

The philosophy surrounding the suburbs is highly dependent on gender roles where men are the financial providers and women stay at home and take care of the family. This created a hierarchy where women were inferior to men and were better off as homemakers. The ideology of women at the time was: find a man at an early age, get married, have children and take care of the home. The woman depicted in Godwin’s story followed this stereotype and became a housewife with a child and a good husband. She becomes dissatisfied with her place in the family when “Putting the warm dishes away in the cupboard, she turned and saw the child 's grey eyes approving her movements…She began yelping without tears” as she…

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