Society 's Expectations Of Women During The Civil Rights Movement

1564 Words Nov 7th, 2016 7 Pages
The years from 1954 to 1974 in the Americas were part of an era of change and action in many parts of American society. These years would go down in history as the one of the most dynamic in American history. It was a time of empowerment, breaking down of social barriers, and many more topics, which authors such as Alice Walker discussed as major parts of their works. In her novel Meridian, Walker criticizes society’s expectations of woman’s roles, showing support of individuality and independence of women during the Civil Rights Movement years through the unique viewpoints of different characters and the development of characters, as well as using significant symbols.
The deeper meanings of titles used in the story helps develop the structure of the novel while interweaving the Civil Rights movement with the idea of women’s empowerment. Perhaps one of the most significant representations of this would be the name of the titular character, Meridian. In the very beginning of the novel, Walker presents a dictionary definition of the word meridian, providing readers with the pronunciation “me * rid i * an”. The pronunciation connects to the structure of the story, which has coincidentally been split into three distinct sections, just like how the pronunciation has been. The first syllable “me” relates to the first and longest part of the novel, which is all about Meridian. “Rid I” corresponds to second part of the novel. This section of the word could be interpreted as the…

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