The Feminine Rebel: Treacherous Housewife-mothers and Aggressive Wives Fighting for Personal Identity in Authur Miller’s After the Fall

Xiaojuan YAO

Abstract


This article attempts to explore Arthur Miller’s representation of wife and mother characters in his play After the Fall. In the play, Miller puts more emphasis on his wife and mother characters’ awakening and rebellion. Miller portrays Rose as a treacherous housewife-mother who rebels against the idealized woman image of loving wife and sacrificial mother by becoming a separate person, asserting her own ambition and meeting her own demands. And through Louise’s victory in her fighting for personal identify, Miller shows women’s strong voices in their family. Besides, via Maggie’s tragedy in her self-pursuit, Miller proves that women can be as significant and tragic as men. In his effort to depict wife and mother’s rebellious spirits, Miller creates some complicated and diverse wife and mother images. So, that his representations of autonomous women achieve victories and suffer defeats disproves the viewpoint that Miller’s women are mere objects of male desire without self-defined identity.

Key words: Arthur Miller; After the Fall; Housewifemothers; Wives; Personal identity


Keywords


Arthur Miller; After the Fall; Housewifemothers; Wives; Personal identity



DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968%2Fj.sll.1923156320120401.795

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