Analysis Of Angela Carter 's ' Beauty And The Beast ' Essay example

1163 Words Sep 21st, 2015 5 Pages
“There is the great lesson of ‘Beauty and the Beast’, that a thing must be loved before it is lovable”
-G.K. Chesterton

Growing up, we are accustomed to the famous phrase "Once upon a time", identifying ourselves with the heroine who triumphed over her evil stepmother and magically acquired the beautiful dress to enchant the charming prince. However, in this adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, Angela Carter delves into psychic transformation, liberating her female characters from conventional gender roles. She brings to light women’s primal desires, taunting the reader’s expectations regarding the traditional roles of male and female. Transcending the ideological limitations that fairy tales generally possess, Carter exposes the sexist and stereotypical traditional construction of femininity. The story’s sexual violence and Carter’s feminist worldview create a theme of manipulation and the objectification of women. Carter creates a mechanical maid as a social creation of femininity as something superficial that could be represented by makeup and clothing. The mirror symbolizes the inexistence of self-identity. The powder puff in her other hand is a representation of the misconstruction of femininity. Carter portrays the mechanical maid as a simulacra: “…with glossy, nut-brown curls, rosy cheeks, blue, rolling eyes… in her little cap, her white stockings, her frilled petticoats” (59) to represent a woman who is only defined by her appearance and has her inner voice…

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