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THE VALUES OF FEMINISM AS REVEALED THROUGH
INGE’S CHARACTER IN FREMD’S THE GLASS INFERNO
AN UNDERGRADUATE THESIS
Presented as Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements
for the Degree of Sarjana Sastra
in English Letters
Student Number: 044214015
ENGLISH LETTERS STUDY PROGRAMME
DEPARTMENT OF ENGLISH LETTERS
SANATA DHARMA UNIVERSITY
- Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in raising up every time we fail (Ralph Waldo Emerson).
- Three grand essentials to have happiness in this life are something to do, something to love
and something to hope for (Joseph Addison).
• You have to endure caterpillars if you want tosee butterflies (Antoine De Saint).
I dedicate this thesis for to My Beloved Parents, My Sisters
and My Brother who always support me in accomplishing this
I dedicate this thesis for those who have participated and
supported me so far.
AcknowledgmentsI would like to express my biggest gratitude to Jesus Christ for the
blessings, strength and miracles He has been giving in my life, so that I am finally
able to accomplish this undergraduate thesis. Thank God for answering myprayers.
My gratitude is also directed to my advisor, Ni Luh Putu R., S.S, M.Hum.
I am so grateful for her guidance, patience, and especially for the time she spent
for reading and correcting my thesis. I really appreciate all things she has done in
process of writing my thesis. I would also like to say thank to my co-advisor, Dra.Theresia Enny Anggraini, M. A, for her time in correcting my thesis.
Furthermore, I deeply express my gratitude to my beloved parents for their
love, prayers, support, both financial and spiritual and good advices. I am so
proud to be their daughter. It is wonderful to have both of them as my parents. For
my big sister, Fenty Ferary, thanks for being a good model for me; and thanks for
the love, support and help, “I am so proud of you, Sis!”. For my little sisters
Febby Felicia and Caroline Setiyanti, thanks for the love and support. I am also
so proud of my big brother, Ferry Haryanto. I would like to thank him forencouraging and motivating me in finishing my thesis.
Next, my sincere gratitude belongs to Bunny. Thanks for the love, support,
patience, help and the friendship. It was very helpful and means a lot for me. Itwas nice to have a chance to meet and know you.
I also dedicate this thesis for my little angel, Natalia. Although we meet
only in short time, but it means a lot to me. Thank you for the moment that we
shared, for the laughter and joy. You will always be in my heart and I know youare shinning down on me from heaven.
I would not forget to say thanks to my best friends in Yogyakarta (Rhien,
Dede, Ita, Erlin, Afril, Fitha and Ci Linda). Yogyakarta would not be muchwonderful without you guys.
Lastly but not the least, I would like to express my gratitude to my friends
in class A that I cannot mention one by one. It is nice to have nice friends like
them. There are many wonderful and exciting moments that we have shared
together, “Thanks for the memories friends!” I would not forget to thank all thestaff in English Letters Department. I thank them for their help.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
TITLE PAGE ................................................................................................. i
APPROVAL PAGE ....................................................................................... ii
ACCEPTANCE PAGE .................................................................................. iii
MOTTO PAGE .............................................................................................. iv
DEDICATION PAGE .................................................................................... v
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ............................................................................. vi
TABLE OF CONTENTS ............................................................................... viii
ABSTRACT .................................................................................................... ix
ABSTRAK ...................................................................................................... x
c. Patriarchy and Its Oppressions ................................................... 20
B. The Patriarchal Society as Depicted in the Novel .......................... 43
6. Inge is a Strong Woman ............................................................. 42
5. Inge is an Attractive Woman ..................................................... 40
4. Inge is a Responsible Woman .................................................... 38
3. Inge is a Kind-hearted Woman .................................................. 35
2. Inge is an Independent Woman .................................................. 32
1. Inge is a Brave Woman .............................................................. 28
CHAPTER III: METHODOLOGY ............................................................. 22A. Object of the Study ........................................................................ 22 B. Approach of the Study ................................................................... 23 C. Method of the Study ....................................................................... 25
CHAPTER IV: ANALYSIS .......................................................................... 26A. Inge’s Characteristics ..................................................................... 27
C. Theoretical Framework ................................................................... 21
b. Values of Feminism ................................................................... 17
CHAPTER I: INTRODUCTION A. Background of the Study ................................................................
a. Feminism in General ................................................................. 13
2. Theories of Feminism ................................................................ 13
1. Theories of Character and Characterization ............................... 10
8 B. Review of Related Theories ........................................................... 10
8 A. Review of Related Studies .............................................................
5 CHAPTER II: THEORETICAL REVIEW ................................................
4 D. Definition of Terms ........................................................................
1 C. Objectives of the Study ..................................................................
1 B. Problem Formulation .....................................................................
1. The Oppressions from David ..................................................... 45
2. The Oppressions from Paul ........................................................ 50
3. The Oppressions from Tristan .................................................... 53
C. The Values of Feminism as Revealed by Inge ............................... 57
1. Freedom of Choice ..................................................................... 58
2. Equality ...................................................................................... 61
3. Woman’s Right to be Herself ..................................................... 63
CHAPTER V: CONCLUSION ..................................................................... 68BIBLIOGRAPHY .......................................................................................... 73
APPENDIX ..................................................................................................... 75
CORRY VERONIKA (2008). The Values of Feminism as Revealed through
Inge’s Character in Fremd’s The Glass Inferno. Yogyakarta: Department ofEnglish Letters, Faculty of Letters, Sanata Dharma University.
This undergraduate thesis is dealing with one of Angelika Fremd’s novel
entitled The Glass Inferno. It presents the female heroine as the central character
and the interesting issue that comes up in The Glass Inferno is feminism. It tells
about a woman who lives in patriarchal society that causes her experiencing
oppressions from her surrounding. She has to survive in order to get her existence
as a woman. This novel with its complexity, reveals the struggle of a woman who
lives under patriarchal society, and through the main character’s characteristics,
actions, struggle and thought could be seen the values of feminism. It would be
interesting to discuss the values of feminism as revealed through Inge’s character.
There are three objectives of the studies that would be the main discussion
of this thesis. The first objective is to find out the characteristics of Inge as the
main character in The Glass Inferno. The second objective is to reveal the
patriarchal society where Inge lives. The last objective is to find out the process
by which the values of feminism appear through Inge as the main character TheGlass Inferno.
In this discussion, the writer used the library research in which there are
two types of sources that are primary and secondary sources. The primary source
is the novel The Glass Inferno itself, while the secondary sources are the
references books and the sites from internet that supported the discussion of this
thesis. As for the theories, there are two theories applied, they are Theories of
Character and Characterization, and theories of Feminism. Related to the topic of
this thesis, the approach that is used to analyze the problem formulation isfeminist approach.
The result of this study mentions that Inge is a young woman who is
brave, independent, kind-hearted, responsible, strong and attractive. She lives
under patriarchal society, therefore, as the result she gets oppressions from her
surrounding. Patriarchal society always gives negative outcome to the second
class citizen, women. The oppressions can be in sexual or psychological forms.
Through Inge’s characteristics, actions, struggle and thought can be seen that she
reflects the values of feminism that are freedom of choice, equality and woman’s
right to be herself. The story reveals that women have to survive under patriarchal
society in order to get their existence as women who have the same and equalrights with men.
CORRY VERONIKA (2008). The Values of Feminism as Revealed through
Inge’s Character in Fremd’s The Glass Inferno. Yogyakarta: Jurusan SastraInggris, Fakultas Sastra, Universitas Sanata Dharma.
Tesis ini berhubungan dengan salah satu novel Angelika Fremd yang
berjudul The Glass Inferno. Novel ini menyajikan pahlawan wanita sebagai tokoh
utama dan pokok persoalan yang menarik yang muncul di novel ini adalah
feminisme. Novel ini bercerita tentang seorang wanita yang tinggal di masyarakat
patriakhal, yang menyebabkan dia mendapat tindasan dari sekitarnya. Dia harus
berjuang untuk mendapat eksistansinya sebagai wanita. Novel ini dengan
kerumitannya, mengungkapkan perjuangan seorang wanita yang tinggal di
masyarakat patriakhal, dan melalui karakter, tindakan, perjuangan dan pemikirandari tokoh utama dapat dilihat nilai-nilai dari feminisme.
Ada tiga pokok bahasan yang akan dibahas dalam tesis ini. Pokok bahasan
yang pertama adalah untuk mencari tahu karakter dari Inge sebagai tokoh utama
dalam novel The Glass Inferno. Pokok bahasan yang kedua adalah untuk
menunjukkan gambaran masyarakat patriakhal dimana Inge tinggal. Pokok
bahasan yang terakhir adalah untuk mencari tahu proses yang dilalui Inge
sehingga nilai-nilai feminisme dapat dilihat dari karaker Inge sebagai tokoh utamadi novel ini.
Pada pembahasan ini, penulis melakukan penelitian pustaka di mana
terdapat dua macam sumber, sumber utama dan tambahan. Sumber utamanya
adalah novel itu sendiri, sedangkan sumber tambahannya adalah buku-buku
referensi dan situs-situs yang mendukung pembahasan ini. Sementara itu, ada dua
teori yang diterapkan berkenaan dengan teori karakter dan karakterisasi, dan teori
feminisme. Berkaitan dengan topic tesis ini, pendekatan yang digunakan adalahpendakatan feminisme.
Hasil studi ini menyebutkan bahwa Inge adalah seorang wanita muda yang
berani, mandiri, baik hati, bertanggung jawab, kuat dan menarik. Dia tinggal di
masyarakat patriakhal, maka dari itu sebagai akibatnya dia mendapat tindasan dari
sekitarnya. Masyarakat Patriakhal selalu memberi efek negative kepada
masyarakat kelas kedua, dalam hal ini adalah wanita. Tindasan-tindasan itu bisa
dalam bentuk seksual ataupun psikologis. Melalui karakter, tindakan, perjuangan
dan pemikiran dari Inge dapat disimpulkan bahwa dia merefleksikan nilai-nilai
feminisme, yaitu kebebasan dalam memilih, persamaan hak dan juga hak wanita
untuk menjadi diri sendiri. Cerita tersebit mengungkapkan bahwa wanita harus
berjuang dibawah masyarakat patriakhal dengan tujuan untuk mendapat
eksistensinya sebagai wanita yang memiliki hak yang sama dan seimbangterhadap pria.
CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION A. Background of the Study Feminism always becomes an interesting topic to discuss, since it deals with
women’s struggle to get equality in all aspects in life toward men, such as education, work fields, politic, human rights, etc. It is particularly hard to find out what equality means when it comes to gender, since there are real differences between men and women. Men and women are created equal with their own excesses and lacks, therefore they have to complete each other but in practice, there are a lot of unfair treatments towards women. They are treated as second- class citizen and what they are doing is somehow restricted to the society in this male-dominated world. Therefore feminists are struggling to get equality.
Actually, what most feminists want is not to replace patriarchy with matriarchy, they only struggle for equality. However, equality itself is a difficult idea to be seen as something which is standard, fair to someone without any classification from sex.
Women’s movement has existed a long time ago and it is not the invention of the twentieth century. Women had been struggling to get equality since a long time ago, but the one which marked the rise of this issue is the feminist movement. As stated by Deborah L. Madsen in the book Feminist
Theory and Literary Practice feminist movement is divided into two waves. The
first wave is the wave of American Feminism in 1840s-1920 which is commonly marked by the first women’s rights Convention, held in Seneca Falls in 1848 and the second wave is the wave of American Feminism in 1960s which focused upon indictment of male sexism and the domestic oppression of women and also marks the establishment of the modern Women’s Movement (2000:3).
Although feminist movement has already existed for decades but still many cases of women’s oppression are found. Women are oppressed by society and men due to their sex, they are less valued than men. Women are considered as “trouble” for men. Judith Butler in the book Gender Trouble: Feminism and
Subversion of Identity explains that the significance of the term ‘trouble’ in her
title. For men, as the subject of desire, ‘trouble’ is represented by the female ‘object’ of desire who unexpectedly returns and answers the masculine gaze, who refuses the passive position of the feminine object and thereby ‘contests the place and authority of the masculine position’. In the other hand it can be said that a male subject desiring a female object. (Butler, 1990, p vii) It means that the image of women can be seen as something ‘desiring’ and giving ‘trouble’ to men.
As oppressions are received by women, a lot of females and some males authors criticize the system that has existed since a long time ago, and they do not only criticize but also want to open the eyes of people in this world to see define what equality they wish for is. Through literary works, they try to give real and true condition about women’s life in patriarchal society. They always struggle for equality. Therefore, women’s writings are considered as critical category since women’s writings and feminism are closely related. Through the literary works, the authors could convey their ideas, comments, dreams in life. Most of works of feminist authors represent the voice of women, to get equality towards men in all aspects in life. Besides, feminists also use it as a medium to trigger women’s awareness about their own rights, to be appreciated fully by society and men and also to restructure the patriarchal society so that women’s rights will be appreciated and there will be no more oppression towards women.
In this study the writer chooses the novel of The Glass Inferno. The Glass is a novel written by Angelika Fremd, an Australian female writer. The
Glass Inferno is one of her best novels which presents female heroine as the
central of the story. Her novels concern more on women’s world. One of the interesting issues that comes up in The Glass Inferno is about feminism. The
Glass Inferno was first published in 1992 by University of Queensland Press
Australia. It is the second part of trilogy novels dealing with the life of Inge Heinrich as the main character. It deals with the life of Inge Heinrich as the female character who lives in patriarchal society. She has to survive to get her existence as a woman. Although she lives in male-dominated world which caused oppression to her, she keeps on surviving, her dignity as a woman will not strong, responsible and attractive somehow become a proof that she can survive and struggle for her existence as a woman. Patriarchal society and feminism cannot be separated, they have strong relationship. One becomes the cause and one becomes the effect. The negative result is oppression; unfair treatment that triggers many reactions. Many women are struggling to get equality, to be treated as equal as men.
In this study the writer wants to see the feminism values reflected by the main character, Inge. As a woman, she knows what she wants and what she does not want in her life. She wants to have freedom to choose what she wants for her life. In the novel, Inge reflects the values of feminism through her actions, thoughts and struggle. She demands her freedom as a woman, to do whatever she wants to do with her own responsibility and also to be free from males’ domination.
B. Problem Formulation
1. How is Inge characterized?
2. How is the patriarchal society depicted in this novel?
3. How does the character of Inge reveal the values feminism in patriarchal society, as depicted in the novel?
C. Objectives of the Study
Based on those questions in the problem formulation above, this study attempts to obtain satisfying answers. In order to see the feminism values that are reflected by the character of Inge, this study has three objectives that have to be accomplished. First, this study is meant to find out the characteristics of Inge as the main character in The Glass Inferno. By knowing her characteristics, the writer could understand what Inge really likes and what she wants in her life.
Second, this study aims to find out the patriarchal society where Inge lives. This could be seen from how the male characters do to the main character, Inge. We could also see the struggle of a woman living in a male-dominated world. Last, this study aims to find out the values of feminism reflected through Inge, as she lives under patriarchal society, experiencing oppressions and as the main character in The Glass Inferno.
D. Definition of Terms
In order to avoid misunderstanding in reading this study and to give the right focus for the readers while reading this study, there are some terms that the writer needs to define. This definition of terms hopefully can be helpful in understanding the terms that are used.
Barranger defines “feminism” as a critique of prevailing social conditions which have excluded women from dominant male cultural, social, sexual, political and intellectual discourse and pursuits (1994:646). Humm states that feminism is an ideology of women liberation since intrinsic in all approaches is the belief that women suffer injustice because of their sex. She also defines feminism as the principal that women should have political, economic and social rights equal to men (1992: xi). In simple terms, feminism is a form of rebellion against the patriarchal ideology which has placed women in its ruthless clutches for centuries.
In Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English, value(s) is/are defined as standards, principles, or ideas about worth or importance of certain qualities, especially those generally accepted by a particular group (1987: 1165).
Gender, in common usage, refers to the differences between men and women. Madsen defines gender as opposed to ‘sex’, which refers to the socio- cultural characteristics attributed to the different biological sexes (2000: xii). Whereas sex is biologically determined, gender is socially constructed. Feminism has posited gender roles to be socially constructed, independent of any biological basis. In gender studies the term gender is used to refer to propose social and cultural constructions of masculine and feminine.
According to Madsen, patriarchy is another recurrent term, referring to men and all things masculine, and a political system that places power in the hands of men and thus serves male interests at the expense of women (2000:xii).
Feminists argue that the opposite of feminism is not masculinity but patriarchy. Therefore, it is not surprising the word ‘patriarchy’ has negative association when it is used in the context of feminist theory.
CHAPTER II THEORETICAL REVIEW A. Review of Related Studies
is Fremd’s portrayal about women’s struggle in living
The Glass Inferno
in patriarchal society. The main character, Inge in The Glass Inferno faces many problems and injustice treatments because of her sex. In struggling her own will, dreams and also to reject the patriarchal standards in her society, she reflects the values of feminism. There have been many comments on literary works by internationally well-known American writers, whether classic or temporary ones, but it is a different case if the novel study is Australian novel. The writer finds that there is limited information or sources related to the work available on books or internet, but two comments based on the novel are finally found.
Sue Walton in her essay entitled Search for Self Rings with Honesty commented on Inge’s characteristic. According to Walton, women’s quest for identity has becomes a recurrent theme in literature. As the main character Inge represents the same idea. Her struggle in searching for self-knowledge and self- understanding are sort of realization for her curiosity about identity and she does not realize that her refusal to choose any specific course of action in itself is a kind of selection process. Walton explains that many aspects had influenced Inge’s life in her struggle in searching for self-knowledge and self-understanding. By experimenting with different sexual partners, Inge tries fervently to discover who she is and where she belongs. The hostility of the world in which she lives, however, is given full reign when her liaisons are discovered. Society, the law, the medical profession combine to humiliate and control her. Inge moves through Melbourne, Sydney, Papua, and Brisbane trying to establish her own identity. She continues to see her existence in terms of her partners and is unable to crate a sense at herself apart from them.
Walton states that Inge’s act in experimenting with different sexual partners as the way to discover who she is and where she belongs.
Another comment comes from Sneja Gunew from the same source. His essay entitled A New Getting of Wisdom, explains the main character, Inge’s childhood and also the story of an artist’s development that told a migrant and non-Anglo Celtic perspective. He states:
I love the ending. She says that for a square peg, meaning herself, a suitable hole will ultimately be found. Her too we have the Bildungsroman (the story of an artist’s development) but told in this case from a migrant and Non-Anglo Celtic perspective. As Inge’s half-sister Monika declares, ‘if being grown-up makes then I don’t want to be a woman or a migrant!’ The purple hands, incidentally, are on one level merely an allergic reaction to the new country, on another, a telling mark of alienation.
Further more, he also states that there are many sexual actions that appear in the story.
The men are physically brutal and sexually rapacious, while the women here become the subjects, the victims who need to learn survival; bartering sex for material leading to alienation from their own bodies. From those two comments above, we can see that Inge is depicted as a strong, brave and curious woman who lives in male-dominated world. Here, we can see also how her struggle emphasizes her ask of equality in patriarchal society. She struggles for the equality to become the person in her own right, the significant person.
In this study, the writer wants to develop both of those comments, the statements which describe Inge as a figure of woman who struggles in facing the oppressions that she got from her society, patriarchal society. In this study, the writer also wants to find out the feminism values that are revealed by Inge as the main character. It is interesting to discuss the character of Inge since she acts differently from the other women characters in this novel. Her characteristics reveal the effort of feminism values that women should have a progress in thinking to determine their selves, as a significant person, not the other. She no longer can be said as woman who is submissive, obedient and passive in dealing the condition that she has to face.
B. Review of Related Theories 1. Theories of Character and Characterization
Since this discussion is aimed to analyze the characteristic of Inge, related to this idea of feminism, therefore it is important to present theories of character and characterization.
Character is an important element in the story. Character is commonly used in two ways (Abrams 1985:23). The first way is the character designates the individual who appears in the story. Second, the character refers to the mixture of interest, desires, emotions and moral principles that make up each of this individual and character gives a certain situation or circumstances in the story because he or she shows his or her emotion on it.
According to Abrams, character may remain essentially “stable”, or unchanged in outlook and disposition, from beginning to end of a work, or may undergoes a radical change, either through a gradual process of motivation and development or as the result of a crisis (1985:23).
Foster differentiates fictional character into flat and round characters. A flat character is built around “a single idea or quality” and is presented without much individualizing detail, and therefore can be fairly adequately described in a single phrase or sentence. While a round character is complex in temperament and motivation and is represented with subtle particularity; such a character therefore is as difficult to describe with any adequacy as a person in real life, and like real person, sometimes surprising the readers (1927: 29).
Character and characterization are related and cannot be separated from each other. In real life, human sense of character naturally varies with their power of perception and understanding. Human being can find his or her own characterization by seeing others’ judgments towards something.
According to Murphy (1972: 161), the author always reveals the character of imaginary person in the story. It is called characterization. Therefore, attempts to make his or her characters understandable to, and come alive for the readers: a. Personal description. The author can describe a person’s appearance and clothes. The telling and accurate description can help the readers to know the characters further.
b. Characters as seen by another. Instead of describing a character directly the author can describe the character through the eyes and opinions of another character.
c. Speech. The author can give us an insight into the character of one of the persons in the book through what person says. It can be whenever a person speaks, whenever he or she is in conversation with another character, whenever he or she puts forward an opinion, he or she is giving the readers some clue to his or her character.
d. Past life. By letting the readers learn something about a person’s past life the author can give the readers a clue to events that have helped to shape a person’s character. This can be done by direct comment by the author, though the person’s thoughts, through his conversation or through the medium of another person.
e. Conversation of others. The author can also give the readers clues to a person’s character through the conversation of other people and the things they say about him or her. People do talk about other people and the things they say often give as a clue to the characters of the person spoken about. by letting the readers know how that person reacts to various situations and events.
g. Direct comment. The author can describe or comment on a person’s character directly.
h. Thoughts. The author can give us direct knowledge of what a person is thinking about. In this respect he or she is able to do what we cannot do in life.
The author can tell the readers what different people are thinking.
These are some of the ways in which an author makes his or her readers aware of the personalities and the characters of the people that he or she writes about in his or her books. By knowing about the characterization the readers will understand why the character does the thing and the emotional feeling of the readers will also be involved when they read the story.
2. Theories of Feminism
a. Feminism in General
The first idea that is likely to occur in the course of any historical thinking about feminism is that feminism is a social force (Humm, 1992:1). The emergence of this social force is because the awareness of feminists to understand that in all societies which divide the sexes into differing cultural, economic or political spheres, women are less valued than men. Humm states that feminism also depends on the premise that women could consciously and in sexual equality combines with a commitment to eradicate sexist domination and to transform society (1992:1). In the other word it can be said that feminists desire to restructure the patriarchal society, not to replace it with matriarchy, they only struggle to get equality. The goal of feminism is to change the degrading view of women so that all women will realize that they have the same right with men in all fields. Feminist theories reveal the rights that women should have, women’s oppression and also women’s struggle to get the equality toward men.
According to Maggie Humm, in general, feminism is an ideology of women liberation since intrinsic in all approaches is the belief that women suffer in justice because of their sex. It is also stated that feminism is defined as the principal that women should have political, economic and social rights equal to men. Maggie Humm argues that feminist approach aims to redress the portrayal of gender stereotypes and gives the appropriate value to ignore women’s writing (1992: xi).
Feminism appears because there is an unfair treatment toward women in society. The basic assumption of feminism is a movement that starts from the women’s awareness to be free from discrimination, oppression, exploitation and to try to end these treatments. Feminism is a women’s movement to be free from oppressions, discriminations, and to get the same rights and dignity with men.
Feminism believes that women have the same right as men. They have the rights to live, to work, to get education, to get freedom and so on. Women, want. Women are born free and equal to men in the sense of human rights. Unfortunately, in this male-dominated world, women’s rights are not fully appreciated, because what women do is restricted due to their sex. There is a belief in the patriarchal society that men are superior and women are inferior. The misconception of women stereotyping that women are weak, dependent, passive, submissive and receptive makes women seen as inferior to men. It is clear that from time to time people assume that women are nothing compared to men because people themselves believe it and do not want to try breaking that wrong assumption about women.
Feminism also notices that women are always regarded as inferior to men because they are never given equal opportunities to show their intelligence and to prove their capabilities. Their potentialities to develop their abilities are narrowed by the gender stereotypes system built by the patriarchal society.
Related to the gender stereotypes, according to Butler, gender identity is the same with a cultural performance, matrix of signifiers that enables members of a cultural group to ‘read’ the signs of gender and to be read as gendered subject, that the basic ‘to search for the origins of gender, the inner truth of female desire, and a genuine or authentic sexual identity that repression has kept from view (1990: viii).
It is clearly seen that what feminists’ desire are equal rights and equal opportunities for women. Feminist theory reveals the importance of women’s equal opportunities and equal rights. They realize that they have the same right as men, and because of that, women try to fight against the condition and strive for their rights.
In relation to marriage, Stanton says that marriage is only one of a range of choices men may make about how to live their lives; and how women have no individual sovereignty. She recognizes that women are educated and socialized to expert only marriage as the structuring principle of their lives. “Personal freedom is the first right to be proclaimed, and that does not and cannot now belong to the relation of wife, to the mistress of the isolated home, to the financial dependent”.
The married women surrenders all her rights, including the right to control her own body, though her husband gives up nothing, she becomes an unpaid domestic drudge, robbed of her labor; and when women are paid to work outside the home they are paid not according to the value of their labor but according to the value of their gender. Stanton identifies the lack of legal status as a citizen as the root cause of women’s dependence within marriage. That situation also can cause the economic and sexual oppression on woman (1969: 70).
As Stanton has expressed it, we must reject every conception that makes women an instrument of men. Both men and women have the same rights and dignity as human being. They complement each other through their differences. Within a marriage, women have the same rights as men. In marriage, women should be free, respected and sovereign in proportion to the stability of the
Feminist movement also focuses on women’s consciousness about their disadvantageous positions that is regarded as the second class citizen, the purpose is to correct the labeling on women and to restructure the society in order to get the equality in gender. The basic goal of feminist movement is to correct the misconception of women stereotyping and to get the equality toward men.
b. Values of Feminism
Based on the brief explanation about feminism above, there are three values that are important for feminist struggle to get equality towards men. The values will be explained below. i. Freedom of choice
According to Zillah Einstein in her book The Sexual Politics of the New
Right: Understanding the “Crisis of Liberalism” liberalism as an ideology
promised certain crucial values, such as individual autonomy, freedom of choice, equality of opportunity and so on (1982:189). Stanton also supports Einstein ideas that personal freedom is the first right to be proclaimed, and that does not and cannot now belong to the relation of wife, to the mistress of the isolated home, to the financial dependent (Madsen, 2000:40). ii. Equality
Einstein states that liberalism as an ideology promised certain crucial values, such as individual autonomy, freedom of choice, equality of opportunity desire that feminist want: equal rights and also equal opportunities (1992:2). Humm states:
“Liberal feminism aims to achieve equal rights, political and social rights for women. It wishes to bring women equally into all public institutions and to extend the creation of knowledge so that women’s issue can no longer be ignored (1992:181).
Moreover, Madsen states that liberal emphasis on the individual and stresses the importance of the individual which are protected by guaranteed rights, economic justice and equality of opportunity (2000:35). iii. Woman’s right to be herself
Stanton states that the rights of the individual are natural rights which the individual brings into the world of birth; these rights cannot be taken away because they are constituted of the individual. Women and men are created equal, therefore women’s rights have to be appreciated as the same with men (2000:39)
c. Patriarchy and Its Oppression
According to Madsen, patriarchy is another recurrent term, refers to government by men; patriarchy is a cultural (ideological) system that privileges men and all things masculine, and a political system that places power in the hands of men and thus serves male interests at the expense of women (2000:xii).
Feminists argue that the opposite of feminism is not masculinity but patriarchy. Therefore, it is not surprising that the word ‘patriarchy’ has negative association when used in the context of feminist theory.
Humm states that the oppression of women differs too from class and race because it has not come out of capitalism and imperialism. The sexual division of labor and the oppression of women by men predate capitalism. Patriarchal authority is based on male control over the woman’s productive capacity and over her person. This control existed before the development of capitalist commodity production. It was belonged to a society in which the persons of human beings were owned by others. Patriarchy, however, is contradicted by the dominant mode of production in capitalism because in capitalism the owner of capitalist owns and controls the labor power but not the persons of his laborers (1992:96-97)
In Gilman’s view, capitalism and patriarchy work together in the economic and sexual exploitation of women (Madsen 2000: 41). As the negative outcome of patriarchy is oppression. Women constitute the oppressed class in patriarchal society and men constitute the class of oppressors. Gender oppression is the systematic under patriarchy and not a matter isolated violent and discriminatory incidents. According to Anne Koeidt women’s oppression stem from men’s sexual power over women which is achieved through actual or threatened physical violence and by psychological inducements such as romance (Humm, 1992:261). Firestone also supports Koeidt ideas on forms of oppressions, she states:
“But sexual oppression is the fundamental and foundational form of oppression in patriarchal society “(Madsen, 2000:158). Firestone also shows how women and children are educated to accept their place in lower class, a rigidly segregated class modeled upon the sexual class that is ‘woman’ trough the twin mythologies of femininity and childhood. Another form of oppression according to Firestone is love oppression. She concludes that love and romance are very different for men and for women. men idealize, mystify and glorify the individual women with whom they fall in love in order to obscure her inferior class status, women, in contrast, pursue the male love and approval that will raise her up from he subordination class position and validate her existence. In this way, love becomes a political force, a force for unequal power relations (Madsen, 2000:159). Or in the other word it could be said that there are two forms of oppressions, they are physical violence or sexual abuse and psychological inducements or love oppression.
C. Theoretical Framework
In this part of the study, the writer will explain some of the theories and approach that will be used to analyze the problems of the study. It also explains the reason why the theories are needed and applied in the analysis.
The study of Anglika Fremd, The Glass Inferno aims to reveal the feminism values through the main character’s life. In order to achieve the aim, there are three problems come up. First, how Inge’s characteristics are described, second, how the patriarchal society depicted and the last, how the feminism values are reflected through the main character. Therefore, some theories are needed to be applied in the analysis.
The first analysis aims to find out the characteristics of Inge. The theory of characterization, defined by Murphy, and the theory of Forster on character will support the writer to analyze the main character, Inge. The theory of characterization is used to know the process in finding Inge’s characteristics, actions, struggle and thought.
In discussing the patriarchal society in which Inge lives, the writer applies the theory of patriarchal society related to the feminism theories: Feminist
Theory and Literary Practice by Madsen, A reader's Guide to Contemporary
Feminist Literary Criticism by Humm and Feminism: A Reader by Humm. Here,
the impact of living in male-dominated world could be seen clearly from the oppressions experienced by Inge which come from men around.
The third analysis aims to discuss the feminism values as revealed through Inge as the main character. The writer applies the theory of feminism by Humm, Madsen, Montagu and also the theory of feminism presented by Einstein and Stanton. They give three values of feminism, which are; freedom of choice, equality, and woman’s right to be herself. These theories will support in analyzing the values of feminism seen through Inge’s characteristics.
CHAPTER III METHODOLOGY A. Object of the Study The object of the study is The Glass Inferno. This novel is written by an Australian female writer, Angelika Fremd. This novel has 185 pages with 40
subtitles to indicate where the story takes place and also what it is about. The
Glass Inferno is one of her best novel, which presents female character as the
central of the story. It was first published in 1992 by University of Queensland Press Australia. It is the second part of trilogy novels dealing with female character as the main character. by Anglika Fremd tells about a woman, Inge who lives
The Glass Inferno
in male-dominated world. In the patriarchal society where she lives, she has to face oppressions which come from men. She has to deal with it because of her sex. The male characters depicted in this novel are unconsciously or consciously give oppressions to Inge, the sexual oppression and also love oppression. Then, through her experiences in dealing with men, she realizes that she has to strive for her rights, to be equal with men in all of fields. Through her characteristics, actions and struggle we can see the values of feminism. They are freedom of choice, equality, and woman’s right to be herself.
B. Approach of the Study
Since the focus of the study is about feminism, therefore, the writer uses Feminist Literary Criticism Approach. Feminist Literary Criticism Approach is an academic approach to the study of literature which applies feminist thought to the analysis of literary text and the contexts of their production and reception (Goodman, 1996:xi). Concerning with feminist criticism, Guerin in his book A stated that:
Handbook of Critical Approaches to Literature
Despite their diversity, feminist critics generally agree that their goals are to expose patriarchal premises and resulting prejudices, to promote discovery and reevaluation of literature by women, and to examine social, cultural, and psychosexual contexts of literature and literary criticism (1992: 197). Most of feminists believe that our culture is a patriarchal culture. Feminist literary criticism tries to explain how power imbalances between women and men. It also presents how gender stereotypes which is shaped by culture, are reflected in or challenged by literary texts (Guerin, 1992: 196).
Feminist approach is used to analyze the condition of women which is usually differentiated with men and considered as inferior, and then eventually this condition discriminates and places women as secondary class citizen in the society. However, through this story, we could see that a woman’s awareness of her own rights result in an effort to have the same rights with men. The approach sees how women can stand equally with men and breaks the misconception that women are weak, dependent, passive, submissive, receptive and subordinate feminism, that are freedom of choice, equality, and woman’s right to be herself.
C. Method of The Study
In writing this thesis, the writer used the library research to find the data as the main step and also preferred to look for some additional references from the website in internet that hopefully helped the writer to finish this study.
Theories of character and characterization that is applied in this study for a better understanding of Inge as the main character are taken from Abram's A
Glossary of Literary Terms , Murphy's Understanding Unseen: an Introduction to
and Forster's Aspects
English Poetry and the English Novel for overseas Students of the Novel.
To support the analysis of the character of Inge, the writer also used the theory of feminism that are taken from Butler's Gender Trouble: Feminism and , Humm's Feminism: A Reader, Medsen's Feminist
the Subversion of Identity Theory and Literary .
The next process was analyzing the data using the theories of character, feminism and patriarchal society. The first step is analyzing Inge character. The second step is analyzing the patriarchal society that is depicted in this novel. It can be seen from the oppression that Inge got from the male characters in this novel. The third part is analyzing feminism values that are revealed through Inge’s struggle in living against male-dominated world. After getting the report. The final step was drawing a conclusion. This last step was done by relating all the data into general statements in order to answer the three problems.
CHAPTER IV ANALYSIS In this chapter, the discussion will be divided into three subchapters based
on the questions in the problem formulations. The main focus of this study is to reveal the feminism values through the main character, Inge. Therefore, in order to get the study more understandable, this analysis starts with the description of the main character of this novel, Inge. Inge’s characteristics are observed by applying theory of character and characterization. According to Forster, fictional characters could be divided into flat and round character. In this novel, Inge is categorized as the round character since according to Forster round character is complex with subtle particularity; such a character therefore is as difficult to describe with any adequacy as a person in real life. Inge is a character with complex characteristics and in this novel, her characteristics are developing and have complexity, therefore, the character of Inge is categorized as a round character. The characteristics of Inge also could be analyzed deeper by using Murphy's theory on characterization. According to Murphy in Understanding
Unseen there are several ways in which an author attempts to make his or her
characters understandable and come alive for the readers such as from personal description, as seen by another, speech, past life, thoughts, etc. We could find out the characteristics of Inge from other characters, from her past life, her thoughts,
After observing the main character in this novel, the second section will begin with the discussion of the patriarchal society in which Inge lives. The patriarchal society which becomes the surrounding in Inge’s life has more or less affected Inge. It becomes the central problem of Inge, how a woman lives in male-dominated world. The main point of this discussion is that how a woman’s ability has to be challenged in men’s world or in the other word patriarchal society, to get freedom in choosing the pattern of her own life without being entrapped by the system. The patriarchal society as depicted in this novel could be clearly seen from the oppressions that Inge got from the male characters in this novel, the physical violence or sexual oppression and psychological inducements or love oppression.
The third section will discuss about the values of feminism that are revealed by Inge. In this novel, Inge has revealed the feminism values which are freedom of choice, equality, and woman’s right to be herself. It is clearly seen through her struggle in dealing the oppressions which come from men in the patriarchal society where she lives.
A. Inge’s characteristics
In this novel, The Glass Inferno Inge is described as a young, beautiful woman in the age of twenties. She lives with her boy friend, David Rooney and with other friends. They share a room in a small house. Inge is described as a appeal that she has, she is also brave, independent, kind-hearted, responsible, and strong. Her journey as a woman who lives in patriarchal society is marked by her escape from her horrible past. What she had in her past that was she was raped by her step father, more or less has affected her present life. In Inge’s new life, with her savior, her boyfriend, David, she has to face oppressions too. She has to struggle for her own freedom as a woman. Through her actions and ways of thinking, Inge reflects certain values of feminism. To see more deeply how Inge is characterized in the novel, the analysis is divided into each description of her characteristics.
1. Inge is a Brave Woman In Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (1995: 133), the state of being brave means ready to face and endure danger, pain or suffering; having no fear. In the novel, Inge is depicted as a brave woman. Her characteristic as a brave woman could be seen from her past. Her courage to run away from her terrible past, and from the oppressions that she got not only from her step father, but also from her own mother had become a proof that she is a brave woman. She had to avoid her father’s advances and also to keep away her mother from jealousy. Her step father always tried to rape her, unfortunately she did not get any support, what she got were oppressions. That was why she had the bravery to leave her family and moved forward to live her own life. She chose to be free from the sexual abuse done by her step father, Karl and the oppressions that she got from
David Rooney was her savior from Inge’s horrible past. She owed to David, since David helped her to run away. Although Inge did not love David, bravely she took the decision to run away with David. In a way, Inge is a brave woman in making such decision, though she has to barter her body in order to get the freedom. She has to pay high price to get her freedom.
In her new chapter of her life, Inge lives with her boyfriend, David and also with their friends. Inge’s characteristics develop through what she does and thinks. Being David’s wife does not make Inge safe from oppressions, since as a husband, David never gives Inge space to choose whatever she wants, he wants to take control about all the things around Inge’s life. Actually, David treats Inge only as his property, as a means to release his passions, as a means to produce babies. Inge becomes David’s sexual object. David never loves Inge since all what he does to Inge is only to take revenge. He wants to take revenge since when they were in senior high school, Inge rejected David’s love and the wound stayed forever. In the same time, he does not want to lose Inge. He wants to own Inge as his property.
Being David’s wife makes Inge’s movement restricted to her husband’s will. David treats her only as his property. The legal status that they have as a husband and wife, only makes the situation getting worst, it strengthens David’s power to own Inge fully. With the legal status, David feels that he could own Inge fully. David does not appreciate Inge’s rights that she should deserve as a woman to do and not, Inge strives for her rights bravely. One of the examples is when they decided to move to Sydney, for the first time after their marriage Inge bravely decides to do what she wants to, she prefers to leave her husband in order to understand more about herself. She has a neighbor named Lilith, she is a witch and she could do magic to reach her will. Lilith wants to trap Inge in order to ruin her family. Lilith introduces Inge to her friend, Paul. She sets everything to ruin Inge’s family. With Lilith’s trick Inge is trapped in such difficult situation, a situation that actually Inge does not want to be in. Lilith wants to ruin her family, therefore she tells David that Inge is unfaithful to him. David feels angry, betrayed by Inge. He forces Inge to go home rather than with Paul. What Inge did is somehow a kind of unfaithfulness act, but, inside she feels when she is with Paul, she feels different, warm, and being loved. Although what Paul wants only her body, she finds something different, which she sure, she wants it. Therefore, bravely she rejects David’s order to come back home. She remains stay with Paul.
“No David, this bargain I can’t enter. I’ll stay here,” I say finally. (p.83) Inge’s decision to stay with Paul shows that she is a brave woman in making such decision. She prefers to understand more deeply who she is by staying with Paul rather than going home and being David’s property.
Moreover, when David is accepted to be the new teacher in Papua New Guinea, Inge decides to follow him to the remote area. She does not feel afraid to the new environment. In fact, she could adapt well, and get along with the natives. Kiwa. The other women feel they are trapped in that remote area, but not with Inge. She feels that she loves that place very much.
“I feel drawn to everything I see. I can’t get enough of that crazy green twilight when everything seems to be at a standstill waiting for the nightfall. I can’t help dancing to their music. I can see my self living the way their woman live. They’re so natural.”(p.111) Inge’s decision to leave Sydney and make new life in Papua New Guinea gives tribute to understand more who she is. Her bravery to follow her husband and live in a remote area has developed her own characteristics. Living in a remote area has made Inge’s eyes widely open. She meets Tugl, the native man.
She makes decision to make love with Tugl, although she knows the effects. She does it in a matter to get the deeper knowledge to understand who she is, what actually life is and what she wants in her life. After making love to Tugl, she feels her eyes are opened widely. She chooses to leave David once again.
“For days on end I think about the note I’ll leave David and Lena. In the end I write what many wives before me have written. Forgive me, but I can’t stand it anymore. I’m leaving with Rua. My darling Lena, I’ll be back for you. Be good.” (p.153) That kind of action shows that Inge is a brave woman in making such decision. She prefers to leave her husband and her daughter in order to understand more who she is and to find her freedom, her quest for herself with all of the consequences. Her characteristic as a brave woman completes the complexity as a woman who lives in male-dominated world.
2. Inge is an Independent Woman.
In Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (1995: 604), independent is the state of being not dependent on other people or things; not controlled by other people or things. Inge’s independence could be seen from her past. Although she lived in a broken family, it did not make her lost her dignity as a woman. Her childhood was full of sorrow, since her family was migrants, therefore young Inge was forced to adapt in the new environment. Besides she had to face the problem inside her family. Since Inge was a little girl, her mother, Lisl never loved her because she was an unwanted baby. Inge’s mother traded her body in order to get safety from the war and when Inge’s mother gave birth to Inge, she was still too young. Young Inge never got love from her mother neither from her step father.
She was lack of affection, her step father, Karl always took advantages to rape her. Inge spent her adolescent years avoiding her step father’s advances and in return she got her independence. She could not depend herself on her mother neither her grandmother. They seemed to blame Inge for Inge’s beauty that made Karl attracted to her. They always tried to make Inge really ugly or locked up her so that she could not get into trouble. Actually what children needed the most were to be loved, but young Inge never got love, she was lack of affection. Lisl did not give any support at all or try to protect Inge from her step father’s advances, however, she kept on blaming and hating Inge, she could not stand anymore and preferred to run away. Lisl, Inge’s mother kept on hating Inge until
Inge’s childhood was unhappy and full of sorrow. She had to survive for the internal problems in her family and also external problem, which she had to face her new environment as a migrant from Germany. She had to work hard to be accepted in the new school, she had to learn English, she had to blend with the other students in her new school. This hard situations that she got had made her independence grew since she could not depend to anyone to live her adolescent years.
“The school is tiny, one for the seniors, one for the juniors, in the larger room I learnt to speak English, to hate my origins, to survive; blending into the rhythms, the nuances, the hierarchy of my surroundings.”(p.42) She had to force herself to do what actually she did not want to do in order to be accepted in the new environment. Finally she was accepted in her new environment, she could adapt well, she was welcomed by her friends, and in a way, she became popular girl in her school, and through her effort in struggling to live in her new environment by herself had shown her independence as a girl.
In Kiwa-Kiwa where David becomes a teacher, Inge also shows her independence. Most of the white wives have boy house, a native young man who could help all of the house works with low price only for eight dollar a week. But not with Inge, she does not want to have it since she still could do the house work by herself. When one of the wives asks Inge why she does not want to have helper at her house, she answers that she still can do all of the house work by herself. one? Alice says. “Well I don’t want know. It’s a bit like slave labor, isn’t it? I mean we get twenty times that amount and having a grown man do your housework when you’re quite able bodied as a bit strange.”(p.105) By preferring not to have a helper at her house although the payment is cheap, Inge not only shows her independence, that she still could handle all the household things by herself, but also her concerns about the slavery labor issue.
Moreover, when one of the teachers in Kiwa-Kiwa is leaving she is offered to replace the place as the new teacher. Although her background of education does not fit with the subject she has a will to try it. By trying to fill the position, she wants to prove to David that she is also capable to teach. She could do like what David could. She goes alone to the Moresby, where the education department is located. Although the place is really far away from her village and the street is not in a good condition, she still goes by herself, she does not ask her husband to take her to the education department, and it shows her independence too as a woman. David, as Inge’s husband, does not feel happy to know Inge’s succeed to fill the position, in fact he looks suspiciously, as if Inge does not have the ability to teach. By becoming the new teacher, in the other hand Inge wants to prove to David that she could do whatever she wants and that she has the ability to do it. In conclusion, Inge could be said as an independent woman. She could work and it proves that she is financially independent.
3. Inge is a Kind-hearted Woman.
In Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (1995: 601), the state of being kind means showing concern about the happiness and feelings others in a gentle and friendly way. As a human, her loyalty to her friends and her families is very big. She has a good heart and sensitive feeling. When she lives with David in a shared-house with their friends, the one who takes care of David is Inge. She makes him breakfast, waits for David until he returns from work, does the house work, etc.
“I rise with him, make him breakfast, escort him to the tram, walk back down Rathdowne Street, wash the dishes, do whatever housework doesn’t distract from the general mess. I wait for him to return, afraid of the space his absences creates.”(p.11) Inge owes to David since he saved her from her past. Although David treats Inge merely as his property, a means to release lust, but Inge always tries to be good to David. The sexual relationship that they have was always cold because there is no love and it is only to satisfy lust. Although inside her heart Inge feels disappointed with the sexual relationship that she has but she feels that she owes so much to David. She has to barter her body to the freedom that she dreamt for and also to get the shelter and protection. For all what David has done to Inge, she prefers to stay with him.
In their house, they share the rooms with Fitz, a man, a friend of David and also Jo, a woman. Although they live in the same house, it seems that Fitz and Jo could not get along together well. They never speak the same language. It happens because they have different perspective towards life and different idealism. Although Jo is a woman, but she is very tomboy. She used to ride a bike. It seems that Fitz hate it. According to Fitz a woman should be at home, do the households, fulfill men’s needs and satisfy their sexual pleasure. He praises free sex and he thinks that women are worthless, they are merely means to satisfy sexual desire. Fitz hates Jo’s dignity of being a free woman, therefore he sets to ruin it by raping her. He sets everything and gives Jo poison that makes Jo unconscious so that he could release his lust to her.
Fitz rapes Jo successfully. Watching the sexual violence that is done to her friend, Jo, Inge’s sympathy as a woman appears. She could feel what Jo feels.
After that, she helps Jo to fix up with her clothes. She feels empathy for Jo, although Jo seems underestimates Inge. Having the same feeling as women, she feels that her hatred to men becomes bigger, she feels that what Fitz has done to Jo seems to underestimate her, does not respect women’s rights and it makes Inge’s eyes open widely.
The other friend of Inge, Sue who praises love more than anything has the same tragic fate. Sue is the kind of woman who believes and praises love more than anything. She keeps her virginity until the man who is destined for her is coming. She keeps on waiting ad waiting. At that time if a grown up woman still keeps her virginity until she gets married, people will regard it as something old and awkward. As a woman, Inge respects Sue’s idealism. Sometimes she feels a bit jealous. Inge adores Sue for her belief, her idealism and her faith on love. Until one day, Sue is being raped by three masked-men, but Sue recognizes that one of them is her boy friend. She feels disappointed, lost hope, lost faith and lost everything. Hearing her lovely friend got an accident, Inge searches for Sue, she feels sad for what happened to Sue.
“Sue, I heard what happened.” She is still, silent. I sit beside her, my arm around her shoulder, my face amongst her hair. Sue is a statue. She is rigid, like the other statues; the marbe Angel Gabriel, the tiny agonized Jesus. I am the first to sob and then she joins in. Sue’s hair holds our many tears.” (p.33) This shows Inge’s kindness towards her friend. Inge feels empathy and disappointed at the same time. She feels disappointed to men. Men always treat women as their stuff, to release lust and they do not respect women. What happened to Sue has somehow, stronger Inge’s hatred to the system. The system which underestimates women, gives unfair treatment and merely regards women as sexual objects.
Although Inge has terrible past, she was raped by her step father, it seems that she does not want to take revenge to her step father. Her sister, Monika seems to hate her own father for what he did to Inge and the rest of the family. Monika hates him and wants him to be imprisoned for he is a Nazi. Inside her heart, Inge hates for what Karl did to her, but she does not want to take revenge. As a mature woman and a mother, she feels that to take revenge is not a good thing to be done.
It is useless, since it does not solve the problem, and it will not change the condition. Therefore, she rejects Monika’s and Sam’s ideas to imprison Karl.
“But, we’re not sure. We don’t know what he did during the war. We’ve got no evidence. I think it’s better to forget about it. He’s your own father, Monika,” I counter, shocked at the suggestion.”(p.49) As a sister, Inge gives advice to Monika, but it does not mean that she wants to take side with Karl. Inside, she has forgiven him to what he did to Inge.
Inge has erased him from her life, she is trying to live her new life without being interrupted by her past. Therefore, Inge does not want to take revenge. Her maturity as a woman grows up as the time goes by.
4. Inge is a Responsible Woman.
In Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (1995: 1000) responsible means capable of being trusted; reliable and sensible. Inge is said to be a responsible woman since she always accepts all of the consequences to what she has chosen in her life. This could be seen when she is living with David and she finds herself is pregnant. As a young woman in her twenties, she could choose to free herself by aborting the fetus, but she has the responsibility to keep the baby. She chooses to have the baby with all of the consequences. Although the doctor agrees to help her doing abortion. She prefers to keep the baby.
“I can arrange an abortion for you. Dr. Mauris says cautiously. I go tomato red. “No, of course I don’t want an abortion.”(p.36) Her motherly feeling appears and tries to save the baby inside her womb. She chooses to keep it, although she is not ready yet to marry and so does with David. By taking a big decision to marry the man whom she does not love becomes the proof that she is responsible to her life and the baby’s inside. Inge is
Besides responsible to her life, she is also responsible to her family. Although she had bad experience with her family, which she got oppressions not only from her step father, but also from her own mother and grandmother, she does not want to take revenge. Her grandmother, Mami is a typical of conventional woman. In Inge’s adolescent, she always treated unfairly by Mami.
Mami always took side with her daughter, Lisl, she also blamed Inge to Lisl’s death. Although so, Inge never hates her grand mother, she does care for her and wants to take responsibility for her. This could be seen when Inge is getting married to David and Mami is coming.
“Where are you living now Mami?” She cries. I have to bring her tissues before she can answer the question. “I’m living in Dandenongs with a German family. They have adopted me as their grandmother. I’ve lost my own family. I’m all alone.” She starts to cry again. “No, you haven’t. There still Monika and me.” “I never see you.” She says aggressively. “I’ll come and see you, I promise.”(p.50) Inge feels sympathy to her old grand mother. Although she never got love from her grand mother, she still wants to take responsibility of her. As a grown-up woman she knows what to do to her old grand mother.
As the time goes by, Inge has a baby girl. Here, her responsibility as a mother appears. When she gives birth to Lena, her daughter, she already swears in her heart to protect Lena from any kind of men in her surrounding. She does not want if her daughter has the same fate as hers, or her friends’. Having seen many kind of men in her life, Inge has the passion to protect her daughter, Lena so that she will grow up happily, not experiencing what she had in her adolescent.
Inge also has different characteristic with David who seems to see something only from its usage and advantages. For David, work and family are important, but he never make the real decision in his life, including the matter of having a baby, and being a father.
From the explanation above, it is clearly seen that as a woman Inge could be responsible to her life and also to her families. She is also responsible to what she has chosen in her life, she follows the pattern in her life with responsibility. Living in male-dominated world and being David’s wife does not make Inge feels inferior, but in fact she could prove that she is strong and she will be responsible to what she chooses in her life.
5. Inge is an Attractive Woman.
In Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (1995: 66) attractive means having the power to attract; pleasing or interesting. In the novel, Inge is depicted as a young, beautiful woman in her twenties. Besides her inner beauty, her outer beauty and sex appeal that she has are attractive as well. It is shown from many men who fall knees on her. In her adolescent time, when the first time her family moved to Australia, she had to adapt in the new environment. She did it well. She could get along with the boys, play boxing matches and soccer with them. However, when she got her first period and grew her breasts, the way the boys treated her changed. They seemed to underestimate Inge for her sex, and the worst was they seemed to take advantages from her. As a young girl Inge also attracted ugly, in order to protect Inge from the boys. It is true that what she has outside attracts many boys, but, unfortunately all they want only to seduce her. Inge’s first love, as she thought, a boy named Tony was fourteen and he wanted to take advantages from young Inge.
“Tony and I did get each other in the end, but it wasn’t at all like I dreamed. We sat on a log in the dark of a shed tighter. I wanted tender kiss with his hands gently exploring my nipples. I wanted him to say sweet and beautiful things to me in English. I would know what it meant by his tone of voice, I thought, but he kept on shoving his hands into my crotch and I kept pushing him away trying to kiss him. He was fourteen and seemed to have dispensed with the preliminaries to get straight to penetration.”(p.27) It is proven that Inge has strong sex appeal, even in her younger years.
When she already became David’s wife, there are still many men who fall knees on Inge. One of them is Mark. Mark is the visitor in their house. David lets him to stay in their house for few days. Unfortunately, Mark keeps staying for weeks and it is really amuses Inge. Bravely, Mark declares his love to Inge although he knows that Inge is David’s wife.
“During week two, mark declares his love for me. I understand his mumbled proposals by his gestures. He knees on the kitchen floor as I move about preparing dinner. He wrings his hands, rolls his eyeballs and moves his unappetizing beard from side to side. I try to ignore him, go on cooking chips fro David’s dinner.”(p.75) As a visitor who amuses Inge with what he is doing, Mark seems does not care with Inge’s family. Being rejected by Inge, he does not give up. He keeps on trying to seduce Inge. He tries to get Inge’s attention. Once again he declares his love, this time, he uses fine suits and tie. It seems that Mark will not give up in many men who had been attracted to Inge, it could be concluded that Inge was a truly beautiful woman. As a beautiful, young and attractive woman, Inge realizes that she could easily get a man, but actually what she needs is love, not like what men pursue, sex.
6. Inge is a Strong Woman.
In Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (1995: 1185) strong means feelings, thoughts or opinion felt, held or expressed with intensity. Inge is said to be a strong woman since all of her decisions in her life are taken consciously without the help of anyone. Her past becomes the evidence that she is a strong woman. Although she was lack of love that she needed, she still could live her life strongly. Moreover, she had a hard time in her adolescent years, but she could face it and decided to run away from it. She prefers to live her own life without any interruption from her past, from her step father who always took advantages to rape her. Then, she strongly commits to herself to forget the past and face the new life.
“His name, his touch, the crime of my people are stain on my flesh. The birds are no more tears to cry I take off my clothes and ease my self into the fast flowing river to begin the baptism. I wash myself clean of the past. I wash myself clean of hi9s name. I wash myself clean of his hands. I wash myself clean of the crime I haven’t committed.”(p.43) Inge is trying so hard to get out from her past. More or less, her past influences her present life. Finally she decides to be free from her past, forgets what Karl had done to her, and forgets the revenge that she has to Karl and also the
Being David’s wife, she is supposed to be loved and cared, but, unfortunately she does not get that. Since what David does to Inge it seems only to take revenge, he treats her only as his property, as a means to release his passion and a means to produce baby. Inge knows about it and as a mother and wife she is struggling for her own rights as a woman. She is strong in living her life, she never regrets to what happened in her life. As a married woman she does not merely depend on her husband for the financial support. She could work as well as her husband. After they got divorce, she still works to live her live and her daughter.
She never gives up in searching the vacancies until she gets it.
“Once I've finished my training. I'm left alone to check and double check the accuracy of a variety of thermometers and pressures gauges. I am instructed to call the manager at any hour if the readings are abnormal.” (p.161) Her job as a labor in a glass factory is a hard job. In general, usually, only men can do that job, but she takes it and she has the ability to do the job. Being a woman does not make limitation to what she wants to do, in this case she chooses to have a hard work and she also shows her ability to do the work. She has shown to everyone that although she is a woman, but she can do men’s job. She is as strong as men, as tough as men.
B. The Patriarchal Society as Depicted in the Novel.
Patriarchal society is somehow related to feminism. In a way, patriarchy is the opposite of feminism. It is not surprising, then, the word patriarchy has a negative association when it is used in the context of feminism. Patriarchal system has existed for a long time ago, and as the negative outcome of this system, there are oppressions toward the inferior one, in this case, women. Here, the patriarchal society is clearly seen through the males’ characters’ oppressions toward Inge as the main character.
The negative outcome of patriarchy is oppressions. Women constitute the oppressed class in patriarchal society and men constitute the class of oppressors.
According to Anne Koeidt women’s oppression stem from men’s sexual power over women which is achieved through actual or threatened physical violence and by psychological inducements such as romance (Humm, 1992:261). Firestone also supports Koeidt ideas on forms of oppressions, she states:
“But sexual oppression is the fundamental and foundational form of oppression in patriarchal society “(Madsen, 2000:158). Another form of oppression according to Firestone is psychological inducements or love oppression. She concludes that love and romance are very different for men and for women. Men idealize, mystify and glorify the individual women with whom they fall in love in order to obscure her inferior class status, women, in contrast, pursue the male love and approval that will raise her up from he subordination class position and validate her existence. In this way, love becomes a political force, a force for unequal power relations (Madsen, 2000:159). Or in another other word it could be said that there are two forms of oppressions, they are physical violence or sexual oppression and psychological inducements or love oppression. In this novel, Inge is the one who experiences negative outcome from the patriarchal system. She gets injustice treatments from the male characters in the novel. The male characters here not only give Inge oppressions but also exploit and do not respect Inge’s rights as a woman at all. However, as a woman who lives in male-dominated world Inge tries to show that she can deal with it and she could develop herself not because of the help given by men nor the society. The oppressions that she got from the male characters could be seen below:
1. The Oppressions from David.
David, Inge’s savior from her terrible past and Inge’s husband is the one who gives influences to Inge’s life. As a man and Inge’s savior, David feels that he has the power to own Inge fully. It could be seen from his authority towards Inge. He never treated her well, otherwise he treated Inge merely as his appendage. Since David treated Inge only as a means to release his sexual desire, to produce babies and as a sexual object, therefore, it could be said that David oppressed Inge sexually. He never regarded Inge as a fully human being who needed to be loved. The sexual relationships described in this period of Inge’s life are never gentle or tender, they are often cold, selfish and brutal.
“David is the gamekeeper, but I’m only the game, nothing like Lady Chatterly. We don’t kiss. We don’t stroke each other. Opening my legs, he forces his entry. I feel satiated and disappointed at the same time, like a baby when the cold rubber of a dummy is pushed in its mouth instead of it’s mother breast, warm, involving.”(p.7) From the statement above it is clearly seen that David gives sexual oppression towards Inge, since he always forces his will to make love with Inge without regarding Inge’s rights as a woman, which she truly wants or not to have the sexual intercourse. The relationship described above could be said as an unequal relationship since all what David wants from Inge only her body, to satisfy his lust whereas what Inge actually wants is protection and love. Somehow, Inge has to barter her body in order to get protection and shelter.
Besides the sexual relationship that is never gentle or tender, David also oppresses Inge psychologically. He regards Inge as a stupid human being, he feels somehow that he is smarter, stronger and has more power than Inge.
“Maybe you’re just plain stupid. I though you’d at least say you were an atheist. You’re not incubating a catholic are you? You insipid goose! Why don’t you go back to Eajon!(p.11) By not paying attention to David’s question about religion, it does not mean that she is stupid. It is just Inge’s way of thinking about something that is different from David’s. Inge sees something to the fullest, while David sees something only in the surface. For example, when they are arguing about the existence of God, from the first time David has the impression that Inge would not be interested and know about the matter. He already judges and tells that Inge is stupid without listening to Inge’s ideas about it. Therefore Inge seems to ignore David’s question about God.
Moreover, David’s power to own Inge fully becomes bigger and bigger when Inge is pregnant. Inge accepts her pregnancy and marries David as she has to marry Inge and he feels happy to own Inge fully and legally.
“David does. The circle of gold stings and tightens on my finger. Simultaneously my mouth is taken prisoner. This kiss! It’s long-lasts forever. It tells a story. You are mine now it says. You are mine because the society says so. You are my wife. You will lie in my bed legally. There will be rules for your behavior. Your children will be mine. Your destiny will be mine. (p.46) The legal status that they have as a husband and wife has strengthened
David’s power and authority toward Inge. He has power to control Inge, because the society says so. In the patriarchal society in which they live, a married woman has full responsibilities towards her husband and her family. In a way, women have to be submissive and do what their husbands want them to do. Within the marriage, Inge has to survive in living her life from the oppressions that she gets from David. By becoming David’s wife, she has added new labels, as a wife and a mother. She has to do her duty as a wife, to serve the husband’s needs, as a mother to do all of the daily households and nurture the children.
In the other hand, David is a typical of conservative man with his own way of thinking. He becomes a typical of man who feels that a married man has the full rights to own and decide his wife’s life and fate. That is why David feels he has the full responsibilities and power towards Inge and also authority to control Inge to do what he wants. He also thinks that the trifles in his family business, including in taking care the babies are not his concern, but Inge’s.
“Julian asks so many questions I start to feel sad that David thinks of Lena’s birth as women’s business, sacred and scary, out of his reach.”(p.63)
Since their background of marriage is not love, their marriage could be easily destroyed. In addition, David’s reason to marry Inge is all about revenge.
Since they were in senior high school, David was deeply in love with Inge, but Inge rejected David’s love. That is why David always seeks ways to make Inge falls knee on him, to make Inge owes to David, and when he gets Inge in his hand, he will do the same thing as what Inge did to him in the past. It is successful when David helped Inge run away, and now when they get married, David feels that his revenge is paid, he treats Inge merely as his appendage.
Another psychological oppression that David gives to Inge could be seen when they are moving to Sydney and Inge is getting new friend there, Lilith and Paul. Paul tries to seduce Inge although he knows that Inge is a married woman. As a husband who feels that he has the authority toward his wife, David limits Inge’s movement in making friends. David always tries to limit Inge’s movement by asking her to do what he wants only.
At breakfast David remarks,” You are my wife, Inge, and Lena’s mother. Kindly don’t forget that “. I feel like a pupil reprimanded by a teacher.”(p.73) By trying to show Inge’s weakness as a woman, a wife and a mother
David oppresses Inge psychologically. He wants Inge to be submissive to him whether it is good or bad for Inge. What Inge wants actually is to be respected fully by everyone, in this case by her own husband. She wants David to respect her rights as a woman, a wife and a mother. although they decide to divorce. They have two daughters and David does not respect Inge’s rights as a mother by not letting her to meet her own daughters.
David also threatens Inge to lose the custody of both children. He blames Inge for all what happened as Inge’s mistake. David’s hatred to Inge becomes bigger and bigger and as the result, Inge loses her rights to have the custody of her own daughters. She even finds difficulty in meeting her daughters.
“It’s too late. You abandoned her. You no longer have any rights as a mother as far as Lena is concerned. Don’t forget that Rua is also my daughter. Now that I’m back I’m filling for divorce and custody of both children. (p.170) David’s hatred towards Inge comes to climax when Inge decides to leave him and her daughters to pursue her quest of identity as a woman, a whole human being and to live her own life.
Moreover, David’s psychological oppression to Inge could be seen when one of the teachers in Kiwa-Kiwa is leaving and Inge is offered to replace the place as the new teacher. David, as Inge’s husband, does not feel happy to know Inge’s successful to fill the position, in fact he looks suspiciously, as if Inge does not have the ability to teach.
“I’m a teacher now, just like you.” David looks with suspicion. (p.116). David feels that Inge does not have the ability to teach, he thinks that Inge does not deserve to be a teacher. David does not regard Inge’s ability as a woman, in the other hand, he looks with suspiciously, as if it is unbelievable that Inge whole human being and also respects her rights as a woman, not merely as his appendage and sexual object. In a way, it could be said that David is the male character who gives sexual and psychological oppressions towards Inge. He never respects Inge’s rights nor loves her truly. The arrogance of being a man who lives in patriarchal society and feels that he has more power, authority towards Inge, has ruined his own marriage.
2.The Oppressions from Paul.
The other man who gives Inge oppressions sexually and psychologically is Paul, the friend of Inge’s neighbor, Lilith. Paul is a widower, his wife was murdered. Lilith acquaints them in purpose to ruin Inge’s family, she feels jealous to Inge’s life. Therefore, she introduces Paul to Inge, to seduce Inge. Paul is a type of man who likes to have fun with any kind of woman, he only seeks for sexual satisfaction.
“Paul looks like a sandy-haired satyr. A handy bar moustache forms small daggers under his flaring nostrils. His eyes undress, pry, enter without permission. Are you one of Lilith’s kind, they ask. One of his hands touches my breast. I’m burning hot, my face flushes. (p.72) As stated before, according to Judith Butler in the book Gender Trouble: explains that the significance of the term
Feminism and Subversion of Identity
‘trouble’ in her title. For men, as the subject of desire, ‘trouble’ is represented by the female ‘object’ of desire who unexpectedly returns and answers the masculine gaze, who refuses the passive position of the feminine object and thereby ‘contests the place and authority of the masculine position’ (1990, p vii).
In the other hand it can be said that a male subject desiring a female object. It means that the image of women can be seen as something ‘desiring’ and giving ‘trouble’ to men. Here, from the first time they met, Paul tries to seduce Inge by touching her breasts. Inge could be seen as a desiring object who is not fully respected. Paul regards Inge merely as a sexual object.
Moreover, Paul finally succeeds to seduce Inge with the help of Lilith. Lilith gives Inge pills that make Inge’s head spinning. Then Paul comes.
“Paul arrives quickly; too quickly. Lilith lets him in. She starts undress me. He watches. I watch myself. I’m in a movie. I think I’m going to be in porno-movie, but I’m so far away I can’t reach my self. She undresses; he undresses. I stand naked in front of the fire, my head, my body buzzing. They prise open my legs. Lilith’e sleek tongue flickers, inciting my body’s musks and fluids. Lilith makes way for Paul’s onslaught. When he enters he passes through me. Images croed into my vision space.” (p.80) By forcing to do sexual intercourse it could be said that Paul rapes Inge since Inge does not want that sexual intercourse and also could be said that Paul oppresses Inge sexually. From the statement above it is clearly seen that Lilith helps Paul to sets everything. Lilith is a witch and she feels jealous with Inge’s life since she has neither husband nor children. Therefore she wants to destroy Inge’s family. She is also a bisexual, it is proven when she helps Paul undresses Inge and she licks Inge’s body. Lilith also plays tricks on David. She tells him that Inge is unfaithful to him. As the result, David feels so angry to be betrayed, he gives Inge choice to go home or stay with Paul. Inge prefers to stay with Paul. By experimenting different sexual partners, Inge tries fervently to discover who that what Paul wants is only her body. However, she feels when they are making love Inge becomes a true woman and Paul praises Inge’s body. It is a different case when she makes love with David, she feels as an object to release David’s lust, she does not feel happy nor satisfied. That is why she prefers to be with Paul in order to understand who she is fully.
The sexual oppressions that Inge got from Paul become worst when Paul plans out Inge’s future by selling her as a prostitute. In a way Paul does not have any respect towards Inge, he just regards Inge as a means to satisfy his lust and also to produce money.
“Paul plans out my future. He owns my body. His touch opens it like sesame and now he has taken possession. He sells my body to the King’s Cross Whisper. Twice, wearng only skin, I am the centerfold. What is a body on the flesh market? I sell mine by the pound and feel honest.”(p.84) Paul has no different with any other men in Inge’s life. He wants to take advantages for himself, not only the physical needs but also to produce money.
Paul feels that he has full possession of Inge, since he knows that Inge would like to prefer staying with him rather than being with her family.
Moreover, Paul oppresses Inge not only sexually but also psychologically. He is being unfaithful to her. He has another lover, a fat school girl whom he always praises on.
“She’s fat. I like woman fat. The fatter the better. She goes to high school still, mature age mind you, but I like school girl, thy turn me on.”(p.85) Inge feels disappointed although their background of relationship was not respect Inge as his lover. Moreover when Paul finds out Inge and his friend, Michael are sleeping together, Paul feels betrayed and angry.
“You were unfaithful to me,” I defend myself. Tears of confusion erupt. “Yes, but you’re a woman,” he spits out.(p.86) Inge tries to defend her self, but Paul could not accept it. In his opinion he thinks that as a man he could do everything he wants, including to be unfaithful and has another lover but not with Inge. Since Inge is a woman, she has to be submissive, follow the game that is Paul’s and never do something that is out of rules. Here, Paul gives Inge psychological oppression by trying to show her weakness as a woman. Moreover, Paul also a typical of irresponsible man, this could be seen when Inge is pregnant; no body either Paul or Michael wants to take the responsibilities. What they want only to get satisfaction but not to take the responsibilities towards it. The circumstances that Inge has been through somehow has stronger her dignity as a woman who lives in male-dominated world.
3. The Oppressions from Tristan.
Tristan is the man who gives the greatest threat towards Inge. Tristan is in a way a mirror image of Inge. Tristan is also the only man whom Inge loves. She feels as if she finally finds her love and she has a hope to have a brighter future with the man whom she loves. They were old friends who kept in touch although Inge had married David. Until finally, destiny unites them again, Inge works in Glass factory; she never knows that the factory belongs to Tristan. From the first time they met, Tristan already fell in love with Inge, he kept on contacting Inge, therefore finding out Inge works in his company, he feels happy and in a way, he does not let the woman whom he loves to work. He asks Inge to quit from work and live with him in his house. His action could be said as the reflection of patriarchal society that said women’s duties are at home, while men are outside.
Although Tristan loves Inge very much, he starts to give limitation in Inge’s life. This could be seen when Inge wants to meet her daughters, Tristan protests, he thinks that if Inge meets her daughter she will meet and do something with David. Tristan’s limitation towards Inge could be seen as the psychological oppression since he does not respect Inge’s rights as a mother to meet her own daughters. Despite Tristan’s jealousy, Inge keeps on going to meet her daughter.
“You can’t leave me, not even for a day,” Tristan says. “I love my children. I love you too. It’s a different sort of love though. Can’t you see that? I’m separated from my children because of you.” “Your children are David’s brood. When you touch them you touch him.”(p.170) Inge loves Tristan, but as a mother of two daughters, she feels that she has the responsibilities towards them. However, Tristan is a possessive man who wants to own Inge fully, and will never want to share Inge’s compassion with anybody else, even her own daughters.
Moreover, Tristan’s psychological oppression towards Inge could be seen from Tristan’s thought about Inge. Somehow, inside his heart Tristan loves Inge,
“You’re the one I love, yet you are important. You have been used by other men. You’re damaged goods.”(p.174) The love between Inge and Tristan is destructive to Inge as she is influenced by Tristan’s personality. Tristan’s jealousy becomes worst when he asks Inge about all the men in Inge’s life. He wants to know all of the stories about the men who ever made love with Inge. While telling the stories about the men in her life, Tristan always pretends as if he is Inge, as he is the one who makes love with Inge’s stepfather, David, Paul and Tugl.
“David, Paul, Tugl, your stepfather. They were all standing at the end of the bed, mocking me. When they finished mocking me, they started making love to me too. Will you share them with me Inge? We are one, aren’t we? Your body is my body and your men are my men.”(p.175) The situation goes for weeks. Tristan gives big psychological oppressions towards Inge that influences Inge’s personality. The fragile Tristan always regards as if he is Inge when they are making love, but when they finish making love he always feels as if he is betrayed by Inge.
Until one day Tristan has prejudice to Inge, he thinks that Inge has another lover. In fact Inge does not have any lover except Tristan. In the other hand Inge does not want to hurt Tristan, but she does not want to lie for something she has not done. Her love to Tristan makes her sets up a lie to Tristan, that she has another lover, so that Tristan would not be hurt. Hearing Inge has another lover, Tristan feels excited to hear the story and he turns on to hear that story. This thing goes on for weeks. Tristan has a fragile personality and because he loves Inge so that Inge has another lover and feels jealous so that he wants to take advantages by making Inge as his prostitute.
“Really, one could say you were a whore. You didn’t love the other men you were with, did you? You fucked with them to get something out of them. How can I ever really trust you? You’re anything to anyone. I’m sure you’re selling your self behind my back. You can’t fool me. You’d better let me take part in your prostitution or you’re out on your ear. Tristan begins on another occasion. (p.177) By doing so, Tristan gives sexual and psychological oppressions. He oppresses Inge to do something that she does not want to do and makes her as sexual object for others so that he could get money from it. Inge could not reject Tristan’s will since she is afraid of losing Tristan and in a way she has lost the sense of being Inge. She could not recognize who Inge is. At that time in her own mind, Inge almost ceases to exist.
“Tristan dresses me for the customer I say is coming at 2 p.m. My skirt is red and frilled, my blouse is white and frilled, my underwear is lacy and expensive. My scent is “Passion”. I recognize myself as a female teenage of Tristan. Tristan hides in the second bedroom, listens at the door. I let my phantom lover in, speak to him as we pass Tristan’s door. Eagerly he tears off my clothes. Noisily we roll on the bed. There is a shriek or two of pleasure. My customer has paid me 50$ for half an hour. I name him Martin. Imagine his shape and sex. I let Martin out of the door and take the 50$ out of my bag to share with Tristan. Our spoils, our bounty, I feel dirty. (p.178) After Inge satisfies her customer, Tristan who spies on the next door will feel proud, excited and turns on her. They could make love for a long time.
Tristan somehow is mentally ill. His love to Inge has ruined their relationship. He could not accept Inge with all of her past. He always regards Inge as something dirty, unclean, whore and the thought makes Tristan hurts deeply. As time goes by, both of them become fragile constructions. Both of them could not recognize theirselves. Inside her heart Inge wants to be free from it, from all of the sexual and psychological oppressions that she got from the man whom she loves.
Finally, she breaks free, she could confront and recognize herself. She decides to leave Tristan and live her own life.
C. The Values of Feminism as Revealed by Inge.
As stated before, according to Zillah Einstein in her book “The Sexual liberalism as
Politics of The New Right: Understanding the Crisis of Liberalism”
an ideology has promised certain crucial values, such as equality, independence and individual anatomy, freedom of choice, equality, opportunity of career and so on (1982: 189). These values are important for the achievement of feminist’ goal, to restructure the patriarchal system and get the equality in all fields. Humm also states that the urgent desire that feminists want is equal rights and also equal opportunities (1992:2). Moreover, Humm emphasizes the crucial issue about liberal feminism that talks about the values:
“Liberal feminism aims to achieve equal legal, political and social rights for women. It wishes to bring women equally into all public institutions and to extend the creation of knowledge so that women’s issues can no longer be ignored (1992:181)” Due to the issue above, it is not surprising then why feminist movement is still heard until today, because the continuant social inequality, exploitation and oppression towards women still exist in this patriarchal society.
Madsen stated that liberal emphasis on the individual and stresses the importance of the individual which are protected by guaranteed rights, economic justice and equality of opportunity (2000:35). It is supported by Stanton that is talking about women’s rights. The rights of the individual are natural rights which the individual brings into the world of birth, these rights cannot be taken away because they are constitute of the individual, therefore women’s rights have to be appreciated as men (2000:39).
As being told by many feminists to appreciate the fundamental rights as a human being and as a woman, Inge, in this novel struggles for her rights as a woman. Inge can be said as a real feminist since she is conscious and tries to break free from the power of symbolic misrepresentation of women. Inge reflects the values of feminism through her characteristics as a woman who lives in patriarchal society, her way of thinking and the way she is struggling against the patriarchal society where she lives. The values found throughout Inge’s characteristics are:
1. Freedom of Choice.
According to Einstein, the other values of feminism is freedom of choice, and in the novel the character of Inge obviously reveals this value seen from her demands of freedom. One of her effort to get her freedom of choice is shown from her maturity when she is pregnant and prefers to keep the baby rather than to
“I can arrange an abortion for you,” Dr. Mauris says cautiously. I go tomato red. “No, of course I don’t want an abortion. I have a husband who loves me!” I blurt out. What a lie. (p.36) By telling a lie that Inge has a husband who loves her, she wants to get her freedom of choice as a woman who is pregnant and want to keep the baby. When she was pregnant she was still too young, in her twenties, but her maturity as a woman has proven that she can choose the right decision, to be responsible to what she has done.
As a married woman who lives in patriarchal society, Inge is tied to the domestic sphere, nurture the children, maintain the household and also serve her husband, David. Somehow, as a woman, a mother and a wife she is playing her roles as maximal as she could do. Although from the society where she lives she gets oppression and is also being exploited by men, she always finds ways to search for her freedom. Until consciously she realizes that as a woman who has the same rights with men she has to strive for her rights, to be appreciated fully by others. It happens when she is seduced by Paul with the help of Lilith, she is being trapped to that situation. However, she does not regret it, since she finds something in her relationship with Paul. By experimenting different sexual partners Inge is trying to know who she is, where she belongs. Therefore when David, her husband knows that Inge is being unfaithful, he feels angry and betrayed, he asks Inge to go home with him. Until the police is coming and asking Inge whom she wants to be with, David her husband or Paul. policemen asks. No David, this bargain I cannot enter. “I’ll stay here, “I say finally. (P.82-83) By using her freedom of choice to stay with Paul rather than go home with David, Inge has shown her demand of feminism value, that is freedom of choice.
As a woman who consciously knows her rights as a woman, Inge wants to be appreciated by others, in this case by her own husband. By staying with Paul, actually Inge wants to know who she is deeply, to find what she wants in her life and to discover her self identity.
In another case, her demand for freedom of choice could be seen when she is pregnant and she decides to terminate the babies. The main issue that comes up in liberal feminism is issue about reproductive and abortion. The term is often associated with the “pro-choice” position, which states that abortion should be a legal option for any pregnant woman. As a woman who got oppression from her surrounding that causes her got negative outcome that is pregnancy and has the unwanted babies, consciously Inge uses her rights as a woman to do the abortion. She did the abortion twice. The first time when she is pregnant the baby from Paul or Michael, but neither of them want to take the responsibilities. That is why she prefers to terminate the baby.
“The abortionist's clinic is opposite the law courts. I sit in the waiting room with six women. Studiously, we avoid each other's eyes. I reassure myself my baby is only a small unformed piglet, its cells undifferentiated, not human yet. I tell myself the eyes would merely be sockets, the fingers and toes unripe bulbs, the head too large for the tiny curved body. I tell myself the small unformed bud inside is fatherless.”(p.88)
Somehow, Inge is the victim of the circumstances; the baby inside her womb is fatherless since no one wants to take the responsibility. Therefore she prefers to use her freedom of choice to do the abortion. The next abortion done by Inge, when she is pregnant the baby from the native man, Tugl in Papua New Guinea where she becomes one of the teacher.
“The abortionist's clinic lies just beyond the Queensland border. The operation is clinical, efficient. Only medical questions are asked. I wake from a dreamless chemical underworld to the muted hush of ocean upon shore. After the obligatory cup of tea sipped in a deck chair with a panoramic view of sky, cloud and sea, I head back up the coast. A miniature Tugl floats, sways on the out-tide on a ribbon of seaweed while I grind my feet into a hem of surf at the Gold Coast. Tugl and I knew little of each other, nevertheless life has its own purpose.”(p.157) Inge commits to terminate Tugl's baby, the native man. By experimenting different sexual partners, Inge try to discover who she is, where she belongs and what she wants in her life. By striving to achieve her rights as a woman, Inge has revealed one of the values of feminism that is the freedom of choice.
2. Equality Based on the realization of human rights that all women and men have the same rights, Inge desires for equality. Her search for equality is shown through her actions and struggle dealing against the patriarchal society where she lives. It is shown when she is in Papua New Guinea with David, she is offered to fill the position as the substitute teacher.
“What are you going to do? Send you to Moresby to ask the Education Department if you can take his place.” “You’re joking!”
Although Inge’s background of education does not fit with the requirements, she does not give up. She wants to give a try, to be the new teacher in spite of her background. She goes to the Education department and the Regional Inspector hires Inge to be the new teacher. By becoming the new teacher, Inge wants to prove to David that she can also do the same thing like what David does. She also wants to show that as a married woman she can earn money, financially independent, not merely as a wife she has to dependent in all things to her husband. As a husband who never loves Inge, David does not support Inge for her succeed, in fact he looks with suspicion, as if Inge does not have the ability to do the job.
Moreover, Inge’s demand for equality is shown when she decides to divorce from David. As a woman and a mother she wants to have the custody of both of her daughters. She wants to strive her rights as a mother to grow up and educates her daughters.
“I want to see her, David, please. Even a court wouldn’t stop her real mother from seeing her.” (p.171) As a husband with his ego, David will not let Inge to win the custody of their daughters. David accuses Inge as an irresponsible mother and that Inge does not deserve to get the custody. Even David does not let Inge to meet her own daughter, he does not respect Inge’s rights as a mother. Although Inge does not win the custody of both of her daughters, she has done her best to strive for her
Another thing that proves Inge’s demand for equality is when she left David and Lena, she has to make living for her own and her daughter, Rua. She never gives up seeking for a job. She would do anything for her daughter Rua.
Being a single mother does not make Inge dependent to others, therefore, she seeks jobs.
“Once I've finished my training. I'm left alone to check and double check the accuracy of a variety of thermometers and pressures gauges. I am instructed to call the manager at any hour if the readings are abnormal.” (p.161) Her job as a labor in glass factory is a hard job. In general, usually only men can do that job. In spite of that matter, she takes it, in order to make living for her own and her daughter. Being a woman does not make limitation to what she wants to do. She enjoys her new job. She has shown to everyone that although she is a woman, but she can do men’s job. She is as strong as men, as tough as men. Through her actions here, we can see that feminism value revealed by Inge that is her demand for equality in living her live in patriarchal society.
3. Woman’s Rights to be Herself.
Feminists state that the fundamental issue in feminism is the right to be herself without being discriminated, separated, classified from the gender division. What Inge does in the novel reflects this value of feminism, woman’s rights to be herself. Through her actions, it could be seen that she desires her rights to be appreciated by others. This could be seen when she decides to find who she is by experimenting different sexual partners. Although she is a married woman, but she wants to be respected to what she chooses in her life. When she has an affair with Paul, actually she wants to find out who she is and what she wants, it does not mean that she ignores her family. It is just how she has to make decision in living her life fully, not merely accept her life and do her duties as a mother and a wife, dealing with the domestics things, nurturing the children, and serving the husband. She wants to discover who she is, therefore she is yearning for her rights to be herself.
“When he is inside me all of him touches me. When he’s inside me I know myself differently. He turns me to water while he remains stone. In my absence I flow and there is peace. David. I know I should return with him. He has my baby, my Lena. My arm involuntarily coil, remembering her plumb limbs. I feel her wet open- mouthed kisses. But David holds a double-edged sword of love and hate. He turns hate’s sharpened blade towards me. (p.82-83) Inge prefers to stay with Paul since she wants to discover who she is and in the other hand, Inge knows that David does not really love her, but in fact he has hatred and wants to take revenge by regarding Inge as merely his appendage. Therefore Inge wants to strive for her rights to be herself, she prefers to stay with Paul since when she is with Paul she finds herself differently. The sexual relationship that they have also described as more warm, involve and satisfied both of them. It is a different case when Inge makes love with David, the sexual relationship that they have are cold, never warm, brutal and somehow only to satisfy David’s lust. David only regards Inge as a sexual object to release his lust.
Moreover, Inge’s demand for her rights as a woman triggers when she is meets the native man, Tugl, her own student. The mysterious Tugl attracts Inge. As a woman who is curious about life and wants to discover who she is, Inge makes decision to make love with Tugl.
“Absorbed I watch the intertwining of our bodies colours. There is no tenderness, there are no kisses. My clothes fall about me, the moon unveiled in pockets picks out my frame while Tugl stays invisible. He touches my body, exploring its secrets. When he is certain I am not so different from the village girls he squats on his haunches, draws me toward him. I feel as if I’m being spared. The spear is moved to and fro. I am a rabbit with salt on its tail. Tugl cries out in his language. An ache pulls loose from inside and rises as a sound of liberating itself at the throat, a sound unlike any I have made before.” (p.152) It is clearly seen that Inge’s action to experiment different sexual partners is to discover who she is. By experimenting different sexual partners, Inge tries to understand about life and its purpose. She tries to use her sex appeal to achieve her goals. She uses her body and sex appeal to have bargaining position, barter position and as a means to achieve her goals, that is to discover who she is and finds the purpose of this life. As a woman who lives in patriarchal society, her rights are less appreciated, but she always finds way to strive for her rights and somehow due to her actions, she has revealed the feminism values.
The other thing that can be said as Inge’s demand for her rights as a woman is seen when she decides to leave her husband and her daughter to begin her journey.
“For days on end I think about the note I’ll leave David and Lena. In the end I write what many wives before me have written. Forgive me, but I can’t stand it anymore. I’m leaving with Rua. My
Inge finally makes decision to leave David and Lena, to begin the journey as a woman, to find and discover who she is. By leaving her family, it does not mean that she does not have responsibility towards her daughter. It is just how life has made her to choose that way, and her way of thinking that could not stand anymore towards the oppression that she got from her husband, David. The legal status that they have as husband and wife, somehow has imprisoned Inge, bound her to the domestic sphere and not respected Inge’s rights as a woman at all.
The next crucial thing that marks Inge’s journey as a real feminist is when she decides to do hysterectomy, by removing her womb. As a woman she has the rights to do anything upon her body, including removing her womb. By removing her womb, Inge has new paradigm that women are as strong as men, they could do what men could do. Liberal Feminists also believe that it is women’s rights to do whatever they want to their bodies.
“But I'm new now. New person, body. A new start I'm as good as any man. No bleeding or mess, no time off work, no unreliability due to biological factors. Maybe I'll wear jeans and swagger, sitting open-legged in mixed company. Maybe I'll wear a suit and carry a briefcase. Perhaps I'll change my name to ill out my new frame.” (p.160) By doing so, she wants to prove to the society that she is as strong as man, no difference. Consciously she wants to break free from the oppression that she gets from her surrounding; she wants to strive her rights as a woman, to be respected fully.
As we can see from Inge’s characteristics, actions and struggles in living her life in patriarchal society, Inge has revealed the feminism values that are freedom of choice, equality and woman’s rights to be herself. As a real feminist, Inge consciously takes the decision to break free from the oppression that she gets from the patriarchal society where she lives. She wants to be free from it and also to discover who she is as a woman who lives in male-dominated world. She uses her sex appeal and body to have bargaining position, barter position and as a means to achieve her goals. She wants to be respected fully and to get equality in all fields with men. In this novel she has broken the misconception of women stereotyping that women are weak, dependent, passive, submissive and receptive toward men.
CHAPTER V CONCLUSIONS After having a long discussion in analyzing the main character’s
characteristics, the patriarchal society where she lives and the feminism values as revealed by the main character, Inge, now the writer is going to draw the conclusion. The conclusion will be divided into three sections in order to specify the answer of the formulated problems based on the analysis.
First is the characteristics of Inge as the main character. By applying the theory of character and characterization by Murphy and Forster, the writer could conclude that Inge is the main character of the novel. Her characteristics could be seen from her speech, reactions and thought. By using Forster’s theory on character, Inge is characterized as a round character since according to Forster round character is complex with subtle particularly. In the novel, Inge is described as a person who has complex characteristics, such as brave, independent, kind- hearted, responsible, attractive and strong.
Inge’s bravery is shown from her past. Her courage to run away from the oppressions that she got not only from her step father, but also from her own mother has become a proof that she is a brave woman. She chose to be free from the sexual abuse done by her step father, Karl and the oppression that she got from her surrounding, though she has to barter her body in order to get the Paul, her affair. She prefers to understand more deeply who she is by staying with Paul rather than going home and being David’s property. Her characteristic as a brave woman completes the complexity as a woman who lives in male-dominated world. The next characteristic that Inge has is independent. Her independence is shown from her adolescent time. Inge spent her adolescent years avoiding her step father’s advances and in return she got her independence. She could not depend herself on her mother neither her grandmother. Moreover, her independence is shown when she fills the position as the new teacher. By working, she is financially independent. The next characteristic that Inge has is kind-hearted. As a human, her loyalty to her friends and her families is very big. She has a good heart and sensitive feeling. Although David treats Inge merely as his property, Inge always tries to be good to David. She takes care of him by making him breakfast, waiting for him and so on. Inge also shows her kindness by helping her friends Jo and Sue from the sexual oppressions that they got from the men in patriarchal society. Inge feels empathy to her friends and disappointed in the same time. Inge is also a responsible woman, this could be seen when she is living with David and she finds herself pregnant. Although the doctor agrees to help her doing abortion. She chooses to have the baby with all of the consequences.
Besides responsible to her life, she is also responsible to her family, she wants to take the responsibility of taking care of her grandmother. She is responsible to what she has chosen in her life. Inge is also an attractive woman. In the novel, beauty, her outer beauty and sex appeal that she has are attractive as well. It is shown from many men who fall knees on her.
Second is the patriarchal society that is depicted in the novel. The most obvious way to see the patriarchal society is through the oppressions that are experienced by Inge. Women constitute the oppressed class in patriarchal society and men constitute the class of oppressors. In the novel there are two forms of oppressions that Inge is experienced from the male characters in the novel, they are physical violence or sexual oppression and psychological inducements or love oppression. Inge experienced oppressions from her own husband, David, Paul, her affair and Tristan, the man who she loves. Three of them conduct sexual oppressions and psychological oppressions. They regard Inge merely as a sexual object, to satisfy their lust and passion. Paul and Tristan also take advantages by making Inge as prostitute. By forcing Inge to do what she does not want to do, it can be said that they give sexual oppressions to Inge. Besides they also oppress Inge psychologically by limiting Inge’s movement and not appreciating her rights as a woman. As men, they feel that they have more power and authority toward Inge.
Third is the values of feminism as revealed by Inge. As being told by many feminists to appreciate the fundamental rights as a human being and as a woman, Inge, in this novel struggles for her rights as a woman. Inge could be said as a real feminist since she is conscious and tries to break free from the power of through her characteristics as a woman who lives in patriarchal society, her way of thinking and the way she struggles against the patriarchal society in which she lives. The values found throughout Inge’s characteristics are freedom of choice, equality and woman’s rights to be herself. Inge’s freedom of choice could be seen from her maturity when she is pregnant and prefers to keep the baby rather than to do the abortion offered by the doctor. Moreover, her significant action that shows her demand for freedom of choice is when she prefers to stay with Paul rather than go home with David. In another case, her demand for freedom of choice could be seen when she is pregnant and she decides to terminate the babies. As a woman who got oppression from her surrounding that causes her pregnancy and has the unwanted babies, consciously Inge uses her rights as a woman to do the abortion. The next value that is revealed by Inge is equality. Her search for equality is shown through her actions and struggle dealing with the patriarchal society where she lives. It is shown when she is in Papua New Guinea with David, she is offered to fill the position as the substitute teacher. By becoming the new teacher, Inge wants to prove to David that she could also do the same thing like what David does. She also wants to show that as a married woman she could earn money, financially independent, not merely as a wife she has to dependent in all things on her husband. Moreover, Inge’s demand for equality is shown when she decides to divorce from David. As a woman and a mother she wants to have the custody of both of her daughters. The other value that is revealed by Inge isfeminism, woman’s rights to be herself. Through her actions it could be seen that she desires her rights to be appreciated by others. This could be seen when she decides to find who she is by experimenting different sexual partners. By experimenting different sexual partners, Inge tries to understand about life and its purpose. She tries to use her sex appeal to achieve her goals. She uses her body and sex appeal to have bargaining position, barter position and as a means to achieve her goals, that is to discover who she is and finds the purpose of this life. The next crucial thing that marks Inge’s journey as a real feminist is when she decides to do hysterectomy, by removing her womb. As a woman she has the rights to do anything upon her body, including removing her womb. By removing her womb, Inge has new paradigm that women are as strong as men, they could do what men could.
Finally, in the study the writer finds out that Inge has brought a new concept of being a feminist. She could be said as a woman who has the characteristics of feminist, which are; brave, independent, strong and so on. In living her live under the patriarchal society, she experienced oppressions, not only sexual oppression but also psychological oppression from men. Her actions, thought and struggle reveal the values of feminism that are freedom of choice, equality and woman’s right to be herself. She could handle all the problems and oppressions in her life especially related to freedom of choice, equality and woman’s right to be herself with her deep understanding of femininity and
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