A Socialist Feminist Reading of Doris Lessing's the Grass is Singing

Yahya, Wan Roselezam Wan; Lalbakhsh, Pedram
March 2010
International Journal of the Humanities;2010, Vol. 7 Issue 12, p1
Academic Journal
This paper examines how the society shapes and redefines women's identity through capitalist patriarchal economy in Doris Lessing's novel The Grass Is Singing. Being aware of women's sufferings and problems under a patriarchal domination organized in the context of capitalism has consciousness-raising as its outcome. As a result, shared problems and oppressions come to the surface and planning to make a 'change' becomes possible. It is making a 'change' that stands as the ultimate aim of socialist feminists as well as others who are related to feminism(s) in one way or another. This novel relates the story of Mary who lost her economic independence and her status as a successful young woman after her marriage to Dick. The finding shows that Mary's identity goes under a new definition according to the patriarchal capitalist ideology. Another finding suggests that in order to understand the society that Lessing depicts and the way that this society determines the life of the people, one has to look at it from two angles: capitalism and patriarchy.


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