Resistance to Domesticity in Fanny Fern’s Ruth Hall: A Feminist Viewpoint
Keywords:domesticity, feminism, gender, self-reliance,, social class
The status of women in society is often overlooked and defined only through the presence of men. This situation tends to exclude women from socio-cultural, economic, and political contributions to society, which can be reproduced in literary texts. In particular, Fanny Fern’s Ruth Hall (1855) reflects the miserable position of women in 19th century America and demonstrates that women must resist manhood’s power to achieve a certain ontological sense in life. Via a context-oriented technique, our analysis aims to explore the practical means through which Ruth, the protagonist of Fern’s Ruth Hall, resists domesticity to achieve self-realization and social freedom from feminist theoretical viewpoints. According to the analysis, Ruth resists domesticity through events, endurance, self-reliance, and in terms of language. Despite social standards, Fern’s representation of Ruth’s financial success highlights how women can surpass gender boundaries. Fern’s depiction of Ruth further demonstrates how the writings of female authors offer a distinct viewpoint on their place in history. It was envisaged that this analysis could advance our understanding of women’s lives in patriarchal societies from feminist theoretical viewpoints.
Abubakar, H. A., Hassan, I., Azmi, M. N. L. (2021). Otherness in Buchi Emecheta’s Second-Class Citizen: A Postcolonial rendering. Theory and Practice in Language Studies, 11(12), 1534-1539. doi: 10.17507/tpls.1112.04
Alshwayyat, A. M. A., Azmi, M. N. L., Hassan, I. Alamro, K. A. H., Mohammed, M., Daghamin, R. A. (2021). Psychological compassion as portrayed in Dorothea in Eliot’s Middlemarch and Louisa in Dickens’ Hard Times. Theory and Practice in Language Studies, 11(10), 1181-1186. doi: 10.17507/tpls.1110.05
Bannet, E. T. (2000). The domestic revolution: Enlightenment feminisms and the novel. Maryland: JHU Press.
Fern, F. (1855). Ruth Hall. London: Penguin.
Fern, F. (1986). Ruth Hall and Other Writings. New Jersey: Rutgers University Press.
Foner, N. (1997). What’s new about transnationalism? New York immigrants today and at the turn of the century. Diaspora: A Journal of Transnational Studies, 6(3), 355-375.doi: 10.3138/diaspora.6.3.355
Foucault, M., & Blasius, M. (1993). About the beginning of the hermeneutics of the self: Two lectures at Dartmouth. Political theory, 21(2), 198-227.doi:10.1177/0090591793021002004
Friedman, N. (1975). Form and meaning in fiction. Georgia: University of Georgia Press.
Grasso, L. (1995). Anger in the house: Fanny Fern's “Ruth Hall” and the redrawing of emotional boundaries in Mid-Nineteenth-Century America. Studies in the American Renaissance, 1(1), 251-261.
Habermas, J. (1989). The concept of individuality. Voprosy filosofii, 3(2), 35-40.doi: 10.1177/0001848189039002004
Harris, J. (2006). Marketplace transactions and sentimental currencies in Fanny Fern's Ruth Hall. Atq-Kingston, 20(1), 343-359.
Hartnett, S. (2002). Fanny Fern's 1855 Ruth Hall, the cheerful brutality of capitalism, & the irony of sentimental rhetoric. Quarterly Journal of Speech, 88(1), 1-18.doi: 10.1080/00335630209384356
Hutchinson, J. (1990). Angels and Citizens: British women as military nurses 1854-1914 Anne Summers. Canadian Bulletin of Medical History, 7(1), 105-107.doi: 10.3138/cbmh.7.1.105
Klarer, M. (2013). An introduction to literary studies. London: Routledge.
Larson, J. (2009). Renovating domesticity in Ruth Hall, incidents in the life of a slave girl, and Our Nig. Women's Studies, 38(5), 538-558.doi: 10.1080/00497870902952957
Lukács, G. (1920). Class Consciousness. London: Merlin Press.
McKee, A. (2003). Textual analysis: A beginner's guide. California: Sage.
Nasution, S. N. (2016). Feminism study on marginalized women in the effort of empowerment. International Journal of Linguistics, Literature, and Culture, 2(3), 144-150.
Robins, K. (2005). Tradition and translation: national culture in its global context. In J. Corner & S. Harvey, Enterprise and heritage (pp. 29-52). Abingdon: Routledge.
Ross, C. (2002). Logic, rhetoric, and discourse in the literary texts of nineteenth‐century women. Rhetoric Society Quarterly, 32(2), 85-109.doi: 10.1080/02773940209391229
Younes, Z. B., Hassan, I., & Azmi, M. N. L. (2020). A pragmatic analysis of Islam-related terminologies in selected eastern and western mass media. Arab World English Journal, 11. 2, 70-84.doi:10.24093/awej/vol11no2.6