Why Women Smile By Amy Cunningham

Superior Essays
A smile, an abstract art, is utilized by many, but also not understood by many. The corner of our eyes crinkling, the corners of our mouth curling upward, resulting in a broad, bright smile. In America’s society of men and women, we have smiled at one another to show appreciation, to express happiness, or to display a wry countenance. Whether our smile is meant to be genuine or disingenuous, we choose to smile for a multitude of reasons. To which this idea establishes that everyone’s purpose of smiling is driven by their own ulterior motives. In this essay, “Why Women Smile,” written by Amy Cunningham, elucidates that due to societal pressure, women smile because they are insecure and want to be accepted by others. Cunningham then contends …show more content…
Although Cunningham believes that men and women are — in terms of the constitution — equal, as she asserts, “we still don’t seem to be fully in charge of a couple of small muscle groups in our faces” (Cunningham 261). In other words, she alleges that women cannot control their facial expression. To strengthen her claim, Cunningham represents herself as a relatable woman who has already experience this similar situation and is also capable of sympathizing with the audience. By citing her personal experience and integrating it into her argument, this should allow her to compose a coherent and strong claim. The audience should feel that they should trust Cunningham on behalf of her remark and that her assertion can be deemed as impartial because she has already encountered this sort of feeling. They would feel that they should take her claim as acceptable and continue to read her essay. Although her representation as a relatable woman may boast her argument, Cunningham’s argument is inapplicable to my community. In my community, there is a high population of women and men that support feminism. Cunningham makes a claim that women are unable of smiling under the pressure of society. In other words, saying that women do not have the strength, these feminists will find it false as they do possess the strength and vitality and they will fight for women's equality. …show more content…
Cunningham first starts off by referencing to the civil right movement where she sheds light on the oppression of other races who have gradually been able to express their true selves after several rigorous endeavors. She then later states that “contemporary American women have yet to unilaterally declare their faces their own property” (Cunningham 265). This displays that women are still oppressed even after all these movements that they have strived to cease oppression. Cunningham claims that today’s women do not have control of their expressions because society constrains women to do what they are expected. By saying this, the intended audience will feel emotionally indignant as they are reminded by the civil right movement and the dim result that they received from it. By feeling righteous anger, the audience will feel sympathetic with other women and feel the need to stop smiling falsely. Although her argument may sound convincing and compelling, she generalizes that all present-day women are incapable of going against societal expectation weakens her argument. In contemporary days, in my community, women challenge for their rights; these women are called feminists. They will firmly go against the will of society and eschew the negativity around them. Also, seeing that America contains many feminists, they will not be persuaded by the author’s statement

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