By H.G. Wells
Publisher: Argos Vergara
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Wells hasn't written many books with a female protagonist and while I didn't agree with everything that he wrote in this one, it was nice to see him attempt to look at the ideas of feminism, and the suffragettes. It was also interesting to see it interwoven with his own semi-autobiographical novels but from the other point of view. Ann Veronica was a young woman, 21, living at home and dominated by her father at the beginning of the 20th century. She was wanting to go and study biology at Imperial, wanting to live on her own and experience things, and wasn't able to. It was a very interesting premise but I felt that at times Wells did make some of her arguments seem a little trivial. The physical struggle between her and her father who refused to let her go to the dance seemed a tad ludicrous, but the fact that she was unable to earn any money, and had no idea how to even rent a room, seemed much more realistic. I thought the relationships with the men in her life were interesting, I also liked how he described the attitudes and knowledge about sex, what was ignored and what was assumed. I did enjoy it. It was flawed, and I'm sure it's been pulled apart and ridiculed by subsequent feminist critiques but I think Wells managed to portray a lot of the different attitudes towards women that were prevalent at the time. I think the best example was when Ann was attempting to have a very serious conversation with a man about the plight of women, how they had no freedom and should have the vote, and he just refused to engage with her at all. Instead he just went off about how women were beautiful goddesses deserving of worship, and not to be taken seriously. Despite the weaknesses I found it interesting and enjoyable.
Robot-mel said on Dec 16, 2007, 13:07