Nathianel Hawthorne was an American writer of novels and short stories who lived between 1804 and 1864 (Hawthorne 2). Most of his writing was centered on New England featuring majorly on moral metaphors with an anti-puritan inspiration. His works were fictions with more emphasis on dark romantic (Boonyaprasop 15).
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In his writings, he brought out the theme of the immanent evil sin of humanity. His works were heavily loaded with moral messages and deep psychological complexity. In his works, he focused on gender injustices that were deep rooted in the society and which needed to be amended. He criticized the mistreatment of women by the society and social stereotypes that existed and whose main agenda was to advance gender inequalities. Nathianel was well versed with knowledge of the society. He was living in and used every means possible in his works to point out the evil deeds that existed. In his publications, a major way of conveying his message was the use of the stereotype, ‘?angel of the house.’ During his time, women were under intense ideological pressure to perform as ‘?angels in the house’. This pressure created a notion in women to feel psychologically abnormal (Hawthorne 2). However, some women were against feminized cultural heartmaking, headmaking and bodymaking. They argued that the pathologizing of women was destructive. In the context of the stereotype the “angel” was censored not of sin, sorrow, decay, and decay, but of life. Hawthorne uses the “angel” to refer to women and likens her to estranged workers who hardly played a role in influencing their conditions of labor. His cultural symbolism compels readers to re-surmise the broad psychological gender relations that according to him are connected to larger social, industrial and class relations that fabricate both ideological and emotional needs for plainly ordered sex roles. In his work, he insinuates that gender self scrutiny of a kind was vital because it played a major role in the social construction of a systemic power and emotional life possible (Hawthorne 20). Hawthorne constantly insisted that women could stand against the psychological intimidation that they suffered in the hands of the society. Evidently, he criticizes the argument by Hester a philosopher that some sectors of the social power and terms such notion as vague (Hawthorne 50). He believes that an inner self of the women would redefine the female “essence” in the society. Hawthorne maintained that emotional attachment of women to restorative angelhood and motherhood restrained them from further exhaustive theorizing and action. In his work, “The Artist of the Beautiful”, Hawthorne makes tremendous contributions to the cultural theory of subjectivity formation. He prompts readers to put into consideration the historical rationale and needs of romantics who attempt to use culture to construct what in their imagination is “spirit.” Hawthorne further uses other symbols like beauty to depict the subjectivity of women in the society by trying to show how beautify were just but a mere aspect in the society.
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