Date of Award

1994

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts Honours

School

School of Language, Literature and Media Studies

Faculty

Faculty of Arts

First Advisor

Francisco Martinez

Abstract

The purpose of this thesis is to find possible feminine stereotypes in two XIX century Spanish novels, Los Pazos de Ulloa, written by Emilia Pardo Bazan, and La Regenta by Leopolda Alas "Ciarin", both considered realist or naturalists works of fiction. The analysis of the two novels is based on works with feminist perspectives regarding the way women are portrayed in fiction. The belated flowering of the Spanish realist and the naturalist novel came about due to the state Spain was in at the time in question. There was no industrial revolution in Spain as in other neighbouring countries and the national economy was still based on agriculture. Political instability produced several changes of government and military uprisings. The Church was very powerful and intrusive. Both the oligarchy and the Church were corrupt and overpowering. The population at large was very poor, uneducated and not yet organised to demand a better deal. The 1868 Revolution put forward more progressive attitudes which paved the way for changes in the intellectual scene. Leopoldo Alas published La Regenta as an acid critique of the moral corruption of the Catholic Church, the government of the time and the bourgeoisie. In the mediocre town of Vetusta the author presents a variety of stereotypical personalities. Fermin De Pas is an ambitious bishop who wishes to control the town and lusts after Ana, a young married woman. When Ana falls for the local Don Juan she is despised and ostracised by the town. The three main characters and the whole town live by appearances. The novel is a bleak and pessimistic picture of human relations, where individuals have choose to behave in a certain way regardless of the consequences. Emilia Pardo Bazan in her work Los Pazos de Ulloa describes life and nature in rural Galicia and the fight between the animal side and the spiritual side of the individual. Two young women, Sabel and Nucha, become involved in the life of the marquis of Ulloa. Both lover and wife are the true victims of the owner of the pazos and his way of life. Portrayed as stereotypical both women have their lives determined by the men around them.

Comments

Abstract in English, text in Spanish

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