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What is the role of women in the text when comparing how mothers are represented vs....

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emmajolang | Student, College Freshman | eNotes Newbie

Posted February 16, 2012 at 10:15 PM via web

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What is the role of women in the text when comparing how mothers are represented vs. independent women?

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tinicraw | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted February 24, 2012 at 10:18 AM (Answer #1)

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It is interesting that the two main female characters are completely opposite from each other when they meet, but they both have the same background.  Both are Betas who come from the same civilization and are conditioned to be independent, strong women.  (And, both of their names start with an L.--Lenina and Linda).

When these two female characters meet, they are complete opposites from the similar beings they should have been.  Linda is a fat, older lady who has done the worst thing that no woman in civilization would be caught dead doing; and that is having a baby. Ironically, motherhood is frowned upon in Huxley's novel, whereas it is revered in most western cultures from which the author hailed; hence, Linda is represented in the lowest and naturalistic way and Lenina is shown to be the epitome of what women "should be" or what Huxley may have wanted--young and hot!

Huxley presents both women as emotional, needy, followers, though.  Neither one of them has a real independent bone in her body and possibly seen through Lenina.  Both women are dependent upon others to lead them through life; they can't stand strong on their own like the men do in the novel.

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