A Loss of Innocence The United States of America lost its innocence on September 11, 2001. No longer are the vicious attacks on democracy in some far away country; they are now in our own backyard. President Bush said it best, “freedom itself was attacked by a faceless coward…” but now we know the name of that face. For many of us, this is the first time we have experienced what others around the world live with daily. As young people, we can have a profound impact on the future. We can start at this level by supporting our country and the ideals it holds dear. We must remember that the very privilege of an education is one that those who attacked us plainly detest. In fact, it is illegal for women in that country to pursue an education at all. Every step we achieve in the learning process is in defiance to those who keep their citizens ignorant. As students and citizens, we must realize that the power of education comes with a responsibility: to help people of all backgrounds understand that if we are to make any progress as a society, we cannot tolerate terrorism anywhere in our world. However, we must be careful not to express our outrage irrationally against people who had nothing to do with that evil act. One motive for the terrorist attack on our country was contempt for the freedom that allows America to tolerate those who hold different beliefs. Our future belongs to those who stand up and fight for what they believe in. As a nation, we are now at the crossroads: we can choose to allow those with evil intentions to have the loudest voices or we can stand together with one voice. It has been said, “All that evil needs to succeed is for
Feminist Literary Criticism Feminism Feminist Women Criticism
Feminist Literary Criticism As a pragmatic critical endeavor, most forms of Feminist literary criticism share a fundamental assumption that the historical subjugation of women has definite and deleterious effects upon both women and men. The critical project of Feminist critics is thus concerned with “uncovering the contingencies of gender” as a cultural, social, and political construct and instrument of domination (Jehlen 265). Whether by focusing on the evolution of literature written by women or by reevaluating or reinterpreting previous works by men, Feminist critics challenge the “eternal opposition of biological and aesthetic creativity” which past and present notions of gender promote (Showalter 1105). The first step in attempting to change such deep seeded cultural assumptions is to acknowledge and identify their existence and impact. “One has to read for gender; unless it figures explicitly in story or poem, it will seldom read for itself” (Jehlen 273). Feminist literary criticism is not exclusionary, however. Gender is one of a number of salient critical terms long neglected, “an additional lens, or a way of lifting the curtain to an unseen recess of the self and society” (Jehlen 265). By allowing Feminist critics to see ” both deeper and more broadly” into a text, investigations into gender aspire to produce more meaningful interpretations and a more demanding generation of interpreters (Jehlen 272). Works Cited Jehlen, Myra. “Gender” Critical Terms for Literary Study. Ed. Frank Lentricchia and Thomas McLaughlin. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1995.