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Life Essay | Critical Essay #2

This Study Guide consists of approximately 38 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Life.
This section contains 1,598 words
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Critical Essay #2

Kerschen is a writer and public school district administrator. In this essay, she explores Head's incorporation of the genre of the folktale with journalistic reporting of village life, all with an underlying feminist theme.

Bessie Head's unique talent lies in the way she intertwines her feminist aesthetic into traditional African folklore. Head's short story "Life" appears to be a simple folktale that provides a brief glimpse into a traditional Botswanan village after independence in 1966. The characters are stereotypical, the events matter-of-fact, and the moral crystal clear. Yet hidden beneath this tale is a clue to understanding not only the struggle of women in a patriarchal society, but also the struggle of all people forced into roles and categories by those in power.

Folktales are defined by Jan Harold Brunvand in his book The Study of American Folklore as "traditional prose narratives that are strictly fictional and told primarily...

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This section contains 1,598 words
(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Life Study Guide
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Life from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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