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

1159 Words Oct 14th, 2014 5 Pages
In Alice Munro’s short story, “Boys and Girls”, gender roles are observed through the symbolic reoccurrence of being either inside or outside of the fences that barricade the farm. Munro creates this gender divide by specifying being trapped inside the barricade of the fences as female, and being outside the confines of the fences as male. For the girl in the story the fences symbolize the captivity she feels from antiquated gender roles forced upon her, and can also be seen through the roles played by her father and mother, Flora, and through the foxes. The fences surrounding the farm also elaborate the feelings of confinement that gender roles bring upon the girl. Juxtaposing the girl’s restrictions is the male’s ability to leave the farm- ultimately representing their freedom and superiority within the context of the era.

The fences show the reader how the girl feels divided from her father, Henry, and Laird by reason of her gender roles. The fences in the story can be observed as a symbol that Munro uses to express both the gender inequality and how the girl feels trapped by these forced roles. The fences also symbolize the different meanings that come with living inside and outside the confines of the fences. Being outside of the fences of the farm symbolizes freedom and gender based superiority, but also how emotionally disconnected that the girl feels from her father. Contrasting, the girl’s mother represents living inside the fences and submission to the gender…

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