The Good Woman of Setzuan: Female Gender Roles Book Review by kayka

The Good Woman of Setzuan: Female Gender Roles
An analysis of female gender roles in Bertolt Brecht's play, "The Good Woman of Setzuan."
# 108974 | 863 words | 0 sources | 2008 | US
Published on Nov 10, 2008 in Literature (World) , Literature (German) , Drama and Theater (General)

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This paper analyzes Shen Te's character and role as the female protagonist with a male alter ego in Bertolt Brecht's "The Good Woman of Setzuan." The writer discusses the importance of masks in the play and how their significance in Chinese and Japanese drama is skillfully blended by Brecht with their use in the western world. The writer concludes that Brecht makes a valid argument of how women have to adopt masculine characteristics in order to survive as a woman in a man's world.

From the Paper:

"Shen Te's female/male dilemma is completely relevant to modern female roles. Women in current generations are pursuing a different life: that of a career instead of disposable jobs and raising families. Women are now equal providers to most households, but to be a successful leader, or even sometimes, just to be successful in their career; many women are forced to adapt to male personality traits. Aggression and competition are the main traits women have to focus on: they usually have to be more so than men to be taken seriously or treated equally. Women have to choose to be traditionally male (taking a career) or traditionally female (and taking a family)."

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"The Good Woman of Setzuan: Female Gender Roles" 10 November 2008. Web. 20 April. 2024. <>