The Bell Jar | Literature Criticism Critical Essay by Diane S. Bonds

This literature criticism consists of approximately 23 pages of analysis & critique of The Bell Jar.
This section contains 6,782 words
(approx. 23 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay by Diane S. Bonds

SOURCE: "The Separative Self in Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar," in Women's Studies, Vol. 18, No. 1, May, 1990, pp. 49-64.

In the following essay, Bonds reconsiders feminist critical analysis of The Bell Jar, drawing attention to Esther Greenwood's recovery in the novel. According to Bonds, Esther fails to establish an autonomous, or separative, self, and ultimately resorts to "culturally-ingrained stereotypes of women."

Plath's novel The Bell Jar dramatizes the collusion between the notion of a separate and separative self (or bounded, autonomous subject) and the cultural forces that have oppressed women. The pervasive imagery of dismemberment conveys the alienation and self-alienation leading to Esther Greenwood's breakdown and suicide attempt; the recovery which Plath constructs for her heroine merely reenacts the dismemberments obsessively imaged in the first half of the novel...

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This section contains 6,782 words
(approx. 23 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Diane S. Bonds