The Role Of Women In Firdaus's Women At Point Zero

1000 Words 4 Pages
The novel Women at Point Zero is a story set in Egypt during the mid to late 1900’s. In this book we learn about the life of a woman named Firdaus. Firdaus had a hard life since she was little to the time she died. She was oppressed by her family, always having to obey orders and serve her father. She lost her whole family when she was young, never getting to experience real love in a family sense, eventually not being able to find real love with anyone throughout her adult life. Firdaus also lost the ability to feel physical pleasure due to her mom getting her circumcised at a young age. Firdaus had been sexually abused for the duration of her life, she eventually ended up becoming a prostitute. Throughout her life all the men around her …show more content…
Firdaus met and observed some of the women at her work and she explained how she was the only woman who was highly respected by the men of high power at her work, because she was the only woman who would not accept offers to go to go anywhere or do anything with any of the higher officials. “I felt sorry for the other girls who were guileless enough to offer their bodies and their physical efforts every night in return for a meal, or a good yearly report, or just to ensure that they would not be treated unfairly, or discriminated against, or transferred.”(75-76). This quote shows that even the women employees at the office had the lifestyle of a prostitute, but instead of money they mainly did it for job security or in some cases a good …show more content…
When Firdaus was only eighteen, her uncle and his wife sent her to be married to a man named Sheikh Mahmoud. Sheikh Mahmoud was a wealthy man aged over sixty. Firdaus did not enjoy being married to him, sleeping with him, kissing him, or serving him, but those were the things she did to be able to have food on the table, a bed to sleep in, and clothes on her back. An aspect of married life related to the life of a prostitute was physical abuse from men. When Firdaus did something that Sheikh Mahmoud did not like he would scream at her and then proceed to beat her. This surprised Firdaus, causing her to go back to her uncle’s where she discovered that a husband beating his wife was not uncommon in her culture. “But my uncle told me that all husbands beat their wives, and my uncle’s wife added that her husband often beat her.”(44). That quote brings me to another woman who represents the wives, which is the uncle’s wife. Not only was she represented with the attribute of being beat like a prostitute would, there was also a incident in the book where the uncle forced his wife to have sex with him. “‘No, your holiness, for the sake of the Prophet. No, this is sinful.’ Then his stifled tones hissing back: ‘you woman, you....What sin, and what Prophet? I’m your husband and you’re my wife.’” (38). This again shows how women unwillingly gave away their bodies in return for things. In

Related Documents