In Veza Canetti's Yellow Street, how are the women portrayed, for example, are the aspects typically associated with women (love, family, feminism etc) subverted or conventional?

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karythcara's profile pic

Karyth Cara | College Teacher | (Level 1) Senior Educator

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Canetti attempted to show life as it was in the early 1930s in Vienna. As such, she attempts to relay details of lives as they occurred. Some critics deny that she succeeded in her effort, yet others say she gave a sound picture of the lives of Yellow Street, a center of merchant activity, that has begun to run to ruin. Canetti's ideological orientation was Marxist, thus she presented lives from a Marxist perspective. In one sense Runkel subverts standard women's role as she dies by being "suffocated on her own miserliness," which is usually a negative man's role. In contrast, Emilie attempts to improve her lot by committing suicide with the hope that she will be saved, in which event, she will be sent to a hostel to recover and be fed. This is seemingly an extension of a stereotypical emotion-laden women's reaction to adversity, except that Canetti seems to have subverted the role by making it logical and deliberate with a non-emotional motivation.


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lolaleon's profile pic

lolaleon | Student, Undergraduate | (Level 1) Valedictorian

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Thank you very much for your answer.

I have another question on this topic, if you don't me asking. What is exactly going on with the narrator in the book? On some level the book can be perceived as a sort of pledge for women, but then you have this narrator that is rather distant and cold...Is there a reason for this kind of narration, does Veza trying to achieve a certain effect?