An Analysis Of Alice Munro 's ' Boys And Girls ' Essay

804 Words Nov 6th, 2014 4 Pages
In her short story “Boys and Girls”, Alice Munro concentrates on the controversial gender hierarchy, specifically exploring the expected roles of women in society. She skillfully uses the foxes to symbolize the treatment of women at the time by illustrating the difference in the values of the two, or lack of. The symbol of the foxes is especially pivotal to the story as it illustrates the expected roles of housewives at the time. The foxes, “were not named when they were born, but when they survived the first years pelting” (27) which symbolizes how women were absolutely worthless till they entered marriage. It can also be related to the author’s creation of an unnamed character who is “only a girl” (29), therefore her identity isn’t really relevant. Furthermore, women were expected to identify themselves through their husband’s name, as if they’re their property, which also goes to depict their caged lives as if they were animals. The foxes also illustrate the transition of life from girl to womanhood for their “naked, slippery bodies were collected in a sack and buried at the dump”(28), just as the girls were raised for the sole purpose of becoming a wife and bearing children to satisfy their husbands desires. The life after their marriage can be described as a dump, while their required duties as a housewife is what they would be buried in everyday. The constant relation between the foxes and women demonstrates how “highly” women were valued at the time.

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