Margaret Atwood 's Happy Endings Essay

1194 Words May 24th, 2016 null Page
From a young age, a female is raised to conform to the gender role that is considered traditional in a relationship according to patriarchal standards. In a male-dominant society, women are expected to know how to cook dinner, to keep a clean house, to look pretty, and to be sexually available to keep her man interested enough to marry her. In story “B” of “Happy Endings,” Margaret Atwood uses her female protagonist Mary, to show what a woman typically brings to a relationship by being submissive, beautiful, and passive in a relationship with a man she wants to marry her, because she’s been conditioned to believe that she needs to be married to achieve the ultimate happiness as a woman.
In “Happy Endings” Atwood satirizes the typical submissive behavior of a woman in a relationship, this is done to exemplify the deep-seated programming of women by society with regards to how she is supposed be in a relationship with a man. In story “B,” Mary has a man named John over at her place, she caters to him by feeding, has sex with him, then washes the dishes while he sleeps because she doesn’t want John think she is messy with all the dirty dishes around her place (47). Mary’s character is a model of real world scenario of a woman in a relationship because a woman is taught to be submissive in her relationship. In her dissertation, Woman’s Journey Toward Self and Its Literature Exploration, scholar, Barbara Keller illustrates how women are taught housekeeping skills and how to…

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