Gender Roles In Miss Julie

1421 Words 6 Pages
Gender roles appear to be directly related and shaped by sexuality in August Strindberg´s novel, It essentially depicts how females may initially defy social norms but will eventually give in to their sexual desires hence become inferior again. In Miss Julie the female and male roles are questioned constantly, and ultimately Strindberg humiliates women that attempt to transcend their conventional gender norms through Julie. The interactions between Miss Julie, a high class female and Jean, her poor male servant embody the author´s internal ideas on the matter. This depiction of power battles reflect Strindberg's beliefs of social order. Misogyny is an evident concept put forward by Strindberg and displayed through Jean. In contrast, Julie …show more content…
The character´s dreams represent an extended metaphor for the unconscious ideas of how women and men visualize themselves in society and where they think they belong. In Julie´s dream, she is staring down from the top of a pillar with a “long to fall”, even though she lacks the courage, Julie says she will “get no peace until I come down … and were I to reach the ground I´d want to bury myself in the earth”. In contrast, Jean says that in his dream “I want to climb up, up to the top … plunder the bird´s nest up there where the gold eggs lie… I know that if I could only reach that first branch I´d get on top like on a ladder”. Julie feels the necessity of degrading herself as she does not feel she deserves her position, Strindberg also utilizes this metaphor to foreshadow Julie´s tragic fate of a downfall that will kill her. Jean´s dream is a clear image of his natural desire for more, the symbol of the golden eggs represent the wealth this character aspires to once he has used Julie (that represents the first branch) as the initial step to accomplish his dream. Furthermore, the dreams also symbolizes that whilst Jean strives for more, Julie falls down and both only meet on equal grounds as the sexual act …show more content…
This is the origin of Julie´s hatred towards men, however this character possess an internal conflict as she says “that man was a swine. And I loved him!” Regardless of Julie´s expected self-image, she cannot deny her attraction for men and by being seduced by Jean she has betrayed her mother ideals of equality. Furthermore, Jean sees how Julie martyrizes the “shame and the dishonour” felt whilst he feels “honour of having seduced” Julie. This exemplifies how Julie has become another woman in his list and is no longer better or superior than him. Hence, Strindberg blames Julie´s downfall on the absurd mentality implanted by her mother. On the other hand, Kristin is characterised as Julie´s opposite due to her submissive personality that conforms to subordination, and even though she lacks Jean´s respect, she remains alive. This juxtaposition of female gender roles clearly dictates how Strindberg visualizes the place of women in society and Julie´s tragic ending enacts as a

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