The Struggle for Peace Against The Man
During the hard reading of “The Female Man” we come across the four main characters of the book, Joanna, Jeannine, Janet, and Jael. These women might be from different places in time and space but they all have struggles of their own, most especially have them against men. The thing that most of these women are facing is the over oppressive nature of Male societal views.
For Jeannine, she’s dealing with the pressure of societies views as she struggles with the idea that she requires a man to fulfill her happiness. She even agrees that all she was ever preoccupied with was “For The Man”. “I dress for The Man, smile for The Man, talk wittily to The Man, sympathize with The Man, flatter The Man…” (pp29) only when she started to put herself first in her mind and not the approval of some man did she truly enjoy herself.
Jael comes from the harshest example of struggle against the opposition of man. After wars ravaged her world killing half the population but leaving the other half the “thrive” off the resources as radicalism grows and grows soon the only enemy to be made is that of the opposite gender. It is here that we get a clear look of the dark side of the male society that is just as true in the real world. But even here among the brothels and sex centers the men still believe that raising children to be a more feminine task as full-changed and half-changed are tasked with upbringing the children. When asked to talk to the boss about business we are given the stereotypical showing of a male in power. Holding no manners at all and continually interrupting Jael after asking her opinion. After failing to persuade Jael to be like his slave he of course blames her for bringing this upon them. This enrages Jael who isn’t afraid of combat or of what men think they are capable of, because she knows of the struggle it takes to survive.
As for Janet, in Whileaway there are no men to fight, no men to oppose values, no men to try and assert themselves to power. It was in Jeannine’s world that altercations had happened. Being from Whileaway Janet had always looked out for herself and when confronted by a man she chose to instead of suffer in silence and pray for help she took matters into her own hands and proceeded to break the Marines arm
It is from Janet and Jaels account that the hidden truth behind the story comes out. In order for a better world to happen you must actively make it happen, regardless of the oppression upon you. if you find resistance to those times you must strive for the goal even harder.
The female man, Joanna Russ