Eng. 2341 (12221)
Sept. 20, 2013
Essay #1: “The Storm” and “The Chrysanthemums”
In the theme of sexuality and the differences between genders, an array of conflict forms as the female protagonists are confronted with new temptation. The outlook of woman is increasingly a wedge between the protagonists and their husbands as well as the crevice in sexuality. Although there are many opposing perspectives of how each of the female protagonists tends to each event of temptation, the underlining effect is the class of relationship that both woman have with their husbands. In considering the time frame of the nineteenth century “The Storm,” and twentieth century ...view middle of the document...
The “infatuation” from a prior time is an indication of Calixta not obtaining her sexual pleasure with her husband and indeed finds the gratification with an ex lover. The sexuality of both the female protagonists is not met and lead to internal conflicts of infidelity and temptation between the characters.
The role of women contributes to a diverse part of the theme of sexuality and gender conflicts. This is significant in the story of “The Chrysanthemums” as Elisa struggles to find the appreciation and acknowledgment of importance, as a woman from her husband. The chrysanthemums that Elisa has grown are a product of her spare energy, thus a “strong new crop”, as described by Elisa’s husband (460). The description Elisa’s husband makes of her chrysanthemums and also further comments that he “wish [she] work out in the orchard and raise some apples that big” justifies the overall perspective he has of his wife (460). Although she works out on the fields and does “look block and heavy in her gardening costume”, her husband fails to acknowledge her as a working woman and capable of holding herself as an individual (460). As Elisa is indeed a woman, the role of her hard work does not surpass that of her husband’s when living in a world of male dominance, the twentieth century. However, when living in the nineteenth century, “The Storm” is also a male dominant society in which Calixta is expected to stay home and take responsibility of the house work. In doing so, the attention that she receives from her husband is limited as he is also tending to the day’s work. The routine of work factors in to the lack of sexual pleasure and Calixta’s husband accepting his wife’s role as a woman and the needs she desires. However, the conflict of roles in both stories, differ in the situations that surround the predicament. Calixta has the un-satisfaction of sexual pleasure, while Elisa has the un-satisfaction of acknowledgment. When Calixta’s husband fails to identify his wife’s role as a woman, the conflict of sexuality increases, and she soon finds herself “a passionate creature” in the arms of her ex lover (337). Therefore, the un-satisfaction, underlines the conflict that is also between Elisa and her...