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Title:Das Bild Des Mannes Im Frauenroman Der Siebziger Jahre. (German Text)
Author(s):Weingant, Liselotte
Department / Program:Comparative and World Literature
Discipline:Comparative and World Literature
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Degree:Ph.D.
Genre:Dissertation
Subject(s):Literature, Comparative
Literature, Germanic
Abstract:The study provides a comparative analysis of novels by contemporary female writers from Austria (Schwaiger), Canada (Atwood), the Federal Republic of Germany (Struck), the German Democratic Republic (Reinig), the United Kingdom (Lessing), and the United States (Jong). In the examined novels men are portrayed as a patriarchal trinity: the son-man, the father-man, and the disturbing spirit.
The young man is torn between the male and the female world while struggling for his position in society. Gradually his interest turns to patriarchy, which tends to fascinate him more than women. He then is either crushed by the existing rules of masculine norms or he accepts them and emerges as a patriarchal figure himself. A third variation depicts him as an idealized women pleaser.
The son-man is contrasted with a powerful father type who dominates the world. The father-man has conquered his place in society; he makes the rules. For work and success he has sacrificed his true feelings and his private relations. Outer forms have become more important to him than inner values. In order to cultivate his public image he conforms to patriarchal rules.
The third type, the disturbing spirit, is the eternal seducer who does not believe in fixed rules and who likes to play with the world. Frequently he symbolizes a disappointment; rarely does he keep his promise to inspire and to point out new directions. Like the father type he is the unattainable man and therefore most attractive to his female counterpart.
The attitudes of the female characters toward men reflect the cultural differences which shape the works of each national author. Atwood and Schwaiger draw male protagonists who force women into inner isolation. Patriarchy in their novels is intact; women do not develop a collective consciousness. Man the would-be-conqueror controls power. Powerlessness does not allow for a future perspective in the female characters. Struck and Jong make an effort to deal with feminism. Struck repudiates it; Jong supports it. Both authors feel compelled to create the new woman but not the new man. Yet they become entangled in the old sexual stereotypes. Only Reinig and Lessing reach out for Utopia and design possible patterns for a new man.
Issue Date:1981
Type:Text
Description:367 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1981.
URI:http://hdl.handle.net/2142/71461
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8203633
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-16
Date Deposited:1981


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