Wine in the Wilderness Essay

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Because Wine in the Wilderness depicts a female protagonist asserting her autonomy in opposition to an unjust socio-sexual hierarchy, it is a feminist drama. The associational clusters in the play show a false ideal of subservient black womanhood, a negative cluster describing the supposed black matriarch, and a cluster describing the truly autonomous, individual black woman seeking equality. The pattern of symbolic action is one of Tommy's repeated assertions of her autonomy, at first unconscious and made from an assumption of inferiority. At the turning point in the play's motivation, Tommy becomes aware of her own self-worth, and converts the society of the play to her values. Agent dominates in this drama, in which Tommy's individual spirit transcends the false ideal of a patriarchal socio-sexual hierarchy. The play is an idealistic, optimistic statement of the feminist impulse.

Source: Janet Brown, "Wine in the Wilderness," in Feminist Drama, Scarecrow...

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This section contains 153 words
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Buy the Wine in the Wilderness Study Guide
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Wine in the Wilderness from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.