I see men authority over women. Is that true?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Such a question might be better served with a bit more focus and definition.  If we are examining the play, then there could be a viable case made that men hold an authority role over women.  The idea that a woman has to be "remade" in order to be socially acceptable carries with it much in the way of gender implications.  The social order into which she must be assimilated has been largely defined by men, as it is unlikely that women had a role in carving out these social expectations.  At the same time, a man must "change" a woman.  To some extent, this carries with it an element of dehumanization because a woman must be "redone," as if she is a robot or some type of machine that possesses a mistake or error that needs to be recalibrated. There could be an interesting debate to examine if Shaw saw this as a good thing in reality, or an aspect of reality that requires change.   In a larger sense and around the world, strides have been taken to minimize the gap of power between men and women.  There are more political, social, and economic opportunities for women to define themselves and to possess a sense of autonomy over their own senses of self.  These strides are somewhat challenged by the fact that equal pay for equal work is still not a universal maxim, that representation of women into positions of power is still a goal that must be vigorously pursued, and that there are portions of the world where the role of women has not undergone any significant change.  This would be where the authority of men over women might still have to be reconceptualized.

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Pygmalion

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