Sunday, December 04, 2005


Well, it's the end of term. It went by soooo fast! Well, this is goodbye. It was a great class and am glad I was a part of it. Goodluck everyone next term!! Happy exams.

Her's my little boys. My b-day present in sept. GUS (top) and RUSTY (bottom)

Yeah, they get their good looks from me.

Eliza Haywood

Well, this was a good way to end the term. Although I wasn't a big fan of Betsy Thoughtless, she did however, leave the wrong man in the end. As we've seen many marriages in our readings turn out unhappy or even forced upon women, it's nice to see a happy ending. I'm guessing that men would have been quite resentful of ms. Haywood as she was a new age thinker that thought that women had another choice. Although I wasn't a fan of the read, I was a fan of the message. I can just hear the women readers of her during the time.."you go girl"

Fantomina, however was enjoyable to read. The fact that she had to change personas so many times in oder to please only one man was just pathetic-of the man. She was trying to change herself to make him love her. but isn't it a testament of the man's psychology that he needed all these different women to make him happy?? I think the moral of the story was not to change yourself for anyone. .We discussed how it was a cautionary tale to women of the time not to act like this, but I think it was also a moral story about the double standard. Why was it that she got in trouble for doing these "immoral acts" when the man was never even thought to be in the wrong for sleeping with what he thought to be four different women. Perhaps Haywood and Mary Wroth would have been great friends if they had lived in the same time century. There sure would be some male bashing going on at that tea party! Well, if nothing else let it be a lesson to all young girls, Don't ever change yourself for a man! He's just not that into you

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Frances Burney

I really enjoyed reading this scribbling woman. It was like you were stting there with a good friend while she was reciting all of her thoughts and how her life was going. Yes, it did sometimes seem intrusive, like you were peering into a very personal part of her life sometimes, but it was still a neat experience. I think she must have been a very vivacious woman in a graceful kind of way. Someone that everyone would love to know. It was a long read at parts then at other times, I couldn't put it down. Kind of like a girl reading someone's else's diary before they come back into the room. So my verdict is, that despite it being sometimes a bit blah, I'm glad I read it. 3.5 stars.

Polwheele and Pope

Let's start with Pope. Did anyone else feel the urge to smack something while reading this. the scibbling woman eh? huh. Eliza Haywood as the prize of a pissing contest. Well, I guess we have to give him props for originality. He bashes woman writers but never really says anything about their actual works. That sounds life the work of a coward who is not comfortable with his sexuality enough to have a woman in the buiness of writing. I'll stop there. I found it intersting how Polwheele is completely against anything sexual but yet his writing is very sensual. He speaks of the unsexed female. oh no!! gasp. I find it amusing how Wollstonecraft is such a sore spot for him. Perhaps because of her radical views and her intelligent works. He says that it's not that he feels that women shouldn't write but that there should be clear restrictions. But are there restrictions for men?.. of course not. Women should write about housekeeping and cooking and leave the science, political and social matters to the men. Perhaps instead of writing about other writers, he should have actually written something of some intelligence himself. He says that "the crimsoning blush of modesty, will be always more attractive, than the sparkle of confident intelligence" He gives praise to those female writers who choose to set a good example of feminine propriety and decorum but not those who may be "unchaste" such as wollstonecraft or Behn. .

Thursday, November 03, 2005

My Paper

How my paper is going....

Well, it all worked out. The paper is done. I chose to do my paper on Mary Wollstonecraft and how her own life is reminesent in her works. I chose her because I found her to be the most interesting person that we've covered. She came from a broken home and still amnaged to overcome it and be very successful. (maybe not all in her own lifetime, but her efforts are still ongoing and contiue to be an inspiration) Her family alone is amazing. her husband- William Goodwin..and then they produced Mary Shelley. Wow. I wonder what Mary Shelley would have been like if her mother had lived to see her grow up?? Anyway, Paper is done. A new stressful endeavor awaits.

Manley's Rivella

Well, what can I say about this one? I can't really say that I enjoyed it as there were so many characters, it made it hard to follow sometimes. I didn't enjoy the read, but it was really interesting that she was her own biographer. The way that she tells the story of her own life is really different as she tells it through the gossiping mouths of two men. Thsi in itself is a way to tell people not to take themselves or gossip so seriously. I was also a way of her being somewhat objective of herself. She is able to say things about herself that she may not say if she was telling this story in her own narrative. This also makes it somewhat onesided. This was she can distort some of her life's facts to work to her advantage. Certainly if someone had a shady reputation, this was a way of leaving her legacy without leaving behind her diginity. I guess it's another one of those works that are just interesting because they . I thought that her life was actually more intersting than the piece itself. she seems to make excuses for herself but is also saying that she is the only person of her sex that knows how to live. Maybe she is just a bit superficial or perhaps jsut self-concious. I can't quite figure out which. All of her descriptions of herself counter act each other. Maybe she just thinks that looks aren't everything. She is an interesting lady though. I find it funny how if other authors wanted to be considered legitimate and be respected that they had to disassociate themselves with Manley, Haywood and Behn. the guilt by association. I guess to a certain degree it is like that still. If someone is friends with a person who is a not well liked, than people assume you have the same views. As confusing as this was to read with all the characters and long sentences, it was still worth reading, if not for the innovative narrative alone

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Mary Wollstonecraft and Bathsua Makin

I really enjoyed Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Women. I never got a chance ot read it all but still, of what I did read, was an amazing feat for a woman in her time. The fact alone that she was responding to the negitive views about women from major literary and political figures was very risque. I was so impressed with her. I've read also her novella Mary and also Maria, or the Wrongs of Women. these are also very interesting as they, especially Mary are somewhat autobiographical. The Mary in the novel is also from an broken household of abuse and she is a woman who is constantly wandering and trying to find a place for herself in the world. She was a very remarkable woman and then married to such a remarkable author. Then, to have Mary shelley who also turned out to be a distingued literary figure. That would be one amaing family tree.

I was also very impressed with Bathsua Makin. Her essay was very clear and easy to read. I loved the way she undrecuts her opinions on men. She says that they are good, but then makes referance to a reson that they are not. It was very clever and amusing to read. I can't imagine what the men at that time were thinking of this. It deals with the education of women in a very clever way. Her advertising for her school at the end was also a little surprising. I wasn't really expecting that. I don't think that it ruins this piece in anyway it was jsut another way of making her school known by using the resources that she had. Smart Lady. Whether it worked or not..? who knows.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Aphra Behn's The Rover

I have to say that I really enjoyed this play. Although to the unsuspecting eye it seems to be just another flaky play with love triangles, duels and mistaken identities, there are alot of underlying controversial issues involved. Behn is known for her sexual themes, but I found the strong sexual aggression towards women surprising. The fact that rape came up twice in the play and the men never found it as something immoral and wrong was just upsetting. Blunt once apologizes but only because he didn't know Florinda was a woman of quality. Is it OK to rape woman of a lesser class? Apparently so, according to the men of the play. It is funny how Behn can use such social issues as arranged marriages, forced religion and prostitution as the background to a light comedic play. She used this play to get her opinions heard and they were heard, as this was a very successful play. She was a woman who was very focused on woman's rights which is evident thoughout her works. she was a very accomplished and successful woman writer for her time and continues to surprise her readers today. ****4 stars

To see my weblog on Aphra Behn and The Rover go to:

Margaret Cavendish and Catherine Philips

Maragaret Cavendish. wow. I was completely shocked by Blazing World and had to stop and make sure that I was actually reading what I waas reading and hadin't fallen asleep and into some crazy dream. I don't think that it was an ideal world for her, but I think she has just made up this kind of world in her head to try to find somepalce that may accept her more than the one that she lived in. She really is fascinated with the science of things. It must have been a struggle everyday for her not being taken seriously in the subjects that she urned to learn about. It sounds so frustrating. Well, she had obviously found something creative to do with her time. Nature's cook was another interesting one. She sure was one unique individual. The thought of death being a woman was interesting as I've never seen this before. Even thinking about the skeletal version with the cloke always seems to have male attributes.
She is reversing thr gender roles, although I didn't exactly know why she'd want death as a woman. Maybe it would be more kind, or perhaps it is to empower women. I dont' know. But this poem was very graphic and while reading, I found myself looking at the words saying ewww alot. But at least it was an interesting read

Mary Wroth and Amelia Lanyer

Well, I haven't blogged in a while. So, I'm going to try to catch up on a few things with this blog. First of all, in reading Amelia Lanyer's salve deus rex Judeorum, I was very bored, mostly because it was a long read, but I did enjoy, To All vertuous Ladies in General. It was a little lighter, partly I suppose because it was a poem for patraonage. But it was still a mice poem ot read. I have studied amelia Lanyer before and read her "The description of cooke-ham", which I really enjoyed. This poem is about an escape to an ideal world. although also proably a patronage poem To Lady Margaret and Cooke-ham, it was still sort of a warm and fuzzy place to go.It seems like a very welcoming place that one would like to go and visit. I found myself at the end of the poem, thinking this. Everything is beautiful and everything even in nature is inviting. It is an ideal of course, but it doesn't sound like too bad a place to go. I'd much rather venture there than the Blazing world of Maragaret Cavendish.

Mary Wroth's Pamphilius & Amphilanthus wax very long. I found it sad and pathetic that she is still pining over this man and upset that he still see other women. "He's just not that into you!" Let it go. This was sort of an annoying poem, looking back. She was a woman writer, which was making a huge leap for women and she is writing about pining over a man who is still sleeping with other women. At least at the end of the poem, she gives up on romantic love with this man. Even though this sonnet sequence was somewhat perturbing to me, I did like the line, "he should aspire to be more like me". this is flipping the gender roles of the time. Men were constantly boasting about how women were inferior to men. this changes things around by her saying that men should be a little more like women. (at least with monogamy). Bravo.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Elizabeth's Letters

This was my favorite read for this week. Actually it may have been my favorite work yet. Her letters and Response ot the parliament was hilarious. She was one feisty lady. She certainly said what she was thinking. I guess it would have been easier for her to do this than a lower class woman, but it was still remarkable for this time period. She felt that she would marry when and if she felt like it. She sure put them in their place. I would love to have been there to see the reaction to her letters when they reached parliament. The looks on the men's faces would have been priceless! Also, the end note of how it took the mesenger three drafts in order to word her letter delicately enough to read it aloud was so funny. She must have been so furious when she initially recieved their letters trying to hurrying her to marry. This was my favorite because I was continually laughing at her comments throuought the letter about how abrupt and uncuth she was. Loved it. 4 stars****

Anne Askew

Wow. Now this was an interesting read. I had never heard of her until this class. I found it amazing how she stood up for her beliefs which ultimitely led to her being burned at the stake. It's amazing how someone can commit to something that strongly that even being tortured and the thought of a painful death still doesn't detere them from their faith. Very deep. This was somewhat similar to waht I've been studing in another class about Danton during the French Revolution and how he and his collegues ended up being beheaded for their views on the politics of this time. It really shows you how much things have improved since then. Incredible.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Margery Kempe

This, for me, was definetly not a page turner. I am not much a religious person so trying to get through this piece became very difficult. Although I don't truly understand this sort of lifestyle that she is writing about, I do respect it. Her thoughts on God having both masculine and femine attributes was rathering shocking considering the time period in which she was writing. To me this piece felt like more of a church service than a good read but to each their own. It was still rather interesting. The "Women interpreting Scripture int he Middle Ages" was very helpful. Although it gave only a brief description of how women lived, the beguines and Julian of Norwich, it gave a good insight into how women, especially religious women functioned at that time.

The Wife's Lament

First of all, I just wanted to apologize about how late my first entry is. I am just now really familiarizing myself with blogging. I am very impressed however with everyone else's blogs and how insightful everyone is. I just wanted to comment on one of the reading's from our last class. I found The Wife's Lament the most interesting of our readings as it wasn't particularily clear exactly what the author was trying to say as it had to be translated. This was somewhat unique as everyone's able to draw thier own conclusions as to what the story may be about. When I first read the text I thought that the husband had to leave the country for somekind of battle, but after reading it again and discussing it in class, it seems that maybe he was forced from the country. It is such a sad story for the woie as she is left alone in the world yearning for her husband that either can't or refuses to be with her. I can't even imagine how hard it would have been to live in those days.
I also enjoyed the piece by Christine de Pizan. Although her idea of a women's Utopia sounds nice for a while, I think we would miss the men. Maybe not in her day, but iff there were no rain we would not appreciate the sun.

.Marie de France's Lanval was an enjoyable read for me. I like the stories of arthur, Lancelot and Guinivere so this was a pretty good read. I wasn't expecting this as I ahve never read Marie de France before. I'm glad I did. She definetly wasn't using the master's tools for this one, as she is using this tale to publish her own opinions about the king. Very sneeky. She starts to put doubt in people's minds about Henry's reign