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BLOOD WEDDING ~ Gender Roles

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Christine Faye

on 7 December 2015

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Transcript of BLOOD WEDDING ~ Gender Roles

• Aspect of the female gender role in the machismo of Hispanic American folk culture.

• Derived from what Spanish Culture considered a perfect woman: Virgin Mary

• Emphasizes on feminine virtues like purity, moral strength, and virginity.
- Expected to be faithful and to sacrifice themselves for family

“La mujer en casa,
y el hombre en la plaza.”

“La mujer en casa,
con la pata quebrada”

Christine E.,

Renessa G., Priya J.

How do gender roles negatively affect the nature of relationships?

The concept of masculinity, or the cultural notion that males should be
, and

Males enjoy rights/privileges denied to females.
- Boys and girls learn these ideas at an early age.

With these expectations males:
- feel a sense of entitlement
- become reckless
- abuse "freedom"

Don’t forget the place of the woman
Don’t give up your traditions
Don’t be an old maid, independent, or have your own opinions
Don’t put your needs first
Don’t wish anything but to be a housewife
Don’t forget sex is to make babies, not pleasure
Don’t be unhappy with your man, no matter what he does to you
Don’t ask for help
Don’t discuss your personal problems

outside the house
Don’t change

Ten Commandments of Marianismo:
Portrayal of Gender Roles within Spanish Culture

• Heavily influenced by the government laws and the Catholic Church

• Spanish law discriminated against married women
- “perismo marital”
- “perfecta casada”
- “angel del hogar”

• strong value for family

• hierarchical, patriarchal family structure

• women were destined to fulfill the “stay at home mother” role

• women’s punishment for violence in the home was more severe than for men

• women were to consult their husband for all decisions

“The only mission that the mother country assigns to women is home care”

> “Mother: I know she’s a good girl. Isn’t she? Modest. Hardworking. She bakes the bread and makes her own clothes.” (3)

> “Wife: I’d cooked a meal for you.” (12)

> “Father: What can I say about mine? She’s up at three, with the morning star, baking bread. Never chatters. Gentle as fleece. Does all kinds of embroidery, and she can cut a rope with her teeth.” (18)
What/Who influences these gender roles in the Western culture?

• The result of recurring conflicts between Tradition and Modernity, Stereotypes and Individuality, Men and Women

• Women’s desires to go against the predetermined stereotypes:

> 1918 -women created the National Association of Spanish Women

> 1919- Catholic Church made a group to oppose the new vision of women in
society that feminist organizations tried to promote (Women Catholic Action)

Mujeres Libres (Free Women)
~ 1936
Anarchist women organization that aimed to empower women of the working class
Angered by the sexism in the overall anarchist movement
Goal was to abolish the patriarchy

The Woman Movement

• Though there were cultural and political advancements it only distanced the sexes further from each other

• Women in professional careers began to raise issues of gender inequality; feminism does not revolve around being a housewife/mother

• Defining a woman’s role in society was second nature
felt as if a certain right was being taken away from them (controlling women)
- Treating women as if they are in a subordinate place to men

Embedded Second Nature:
Influence of the Law

• Discriminatory Legislation
1870 Penal Code,1885 Commerce Code and the 1889 Civil Code
Women were penalized harder for adulterous crimes

Men were just exiled for short period; control over values men and women place on their own actions and consequences

Divorce was illegal

• These laws, citizens have to abide by further implemented the ideology of giving a woman her “place” in her marriage or family

• Men are giving the notion to treat their wives with no respect and as anything but equals

The play develops the consequences of such gender roles upon the mentality of the Mother, the Father etc, as well as the influences it has upon

Servant: You’re stronger than a man.
Bride: Because I’ve always done a man’s work? I wish I were a man. (21)

• The deep oppression of women within the Spanish culture, leads to a notion of rebellion, a DESIRE to break free of societal conformity

• The bride desires to be a man because
> she is confined to the role of the inferior and thus a need for the privileges men receive
> desire to be seen as equal
> don’t want the stigma that is attached with being a “woman”
the Woman Movement strives to remove this stigma

Bride: You’ll have to force me.
Leonardo: Force you? Who led the way down the stairs?
Bride: I did. (58)

• Bride directly commits her first act of rebellion

• Acts out of desire for her unaccepted (by society) love

• Portrays a need to run from tradition, itself

If the play had taken place in a Western culture, how might this have impacted the outcome of the play?

Mother: Show your wife a lot of love. And if she gets cross or moody, hug her so hard you hurt her just a little. A rough embrace and a bite- frighten her just a little. Then a soft kiss. She’ll understand. It will teach her that you are the man, the boss, the one who gives commands. I learned that from your father. You don’t have him, to show you how to be strong, so you must listen to me. (47)

Mother: And your grandfather left a son in every corner.(3)

Mother: But remember, girls. So we can all sew and make lace and be peaceful.” (5)

Servant: A bride from these mountains should be strong. She’s yours now. It’s up to you to cure her.” (45)

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