While Miss Brill in “Miss Brill”, Dee and Mama in “Everyday Use”, and Marji in “Persepolis,” are women of different cultures and ethnicities, their roles as women is faced with similar gender inequalities. Some might argue that women are treated as an equal gender with the same amount of opportunity as men. However, Miss Brill, Dee, Mama and Marji share in common psychological, social, and economic issues that women face not only exist today in America, but also Worldwide. Mansfield’s work in “Miss Brill”, is mainly about a lonely school teacher that creates a false reality for herself.
Miss Brill finds herself at the Public Gardens every Sunday afternoon in her certain spot to eavesdrop into others conversations. Miss Brill over hears a young couple ridicule her beloved coat and cruel jokes. Her fantasy is now over, and feels unwanted. The shy old lady finally realizes the ugly truth. Alice Walker’s “Everyday Use” is a good example for showing what happens to a family when there is not strong understanding of heritage. The two sisters, Dee and Maggie are opposites when it comes to personality and looks. Dee has a full figure that is outspoken and wants the finer things is life.
On the other hand, Maggie is shy and introverted with a thinner frame than Dee. The mother of the two decides to give Maggie her grandmother’s handwoven quilts instead of giving them to Dee. The mother doesn’t like the idea of using the quilts as a materialistic item that holds no sentimental value. Especially since the quilts were made by the sister’s grandmother before she passed away. Dee is outraged, and leaves her sister and mother with her boyfriend “Hakim-a-barber”. Dee and her mother don’t see eye to eye when it comes to understanding what heritage really means.
The graphic novel “Persepolis” displays a graphic story of what appears to be about a young woman from a Middle Eastern country that is stopped and approached by guardians of the revolution. The guardian’s job was to arrest women unveiled in public. More so Marji happened to fit the description of a disgrace to her culture. Marji avoids being taken to the head of the Revolution committee by telling a lie and being released. When Marji reached back home, she refuses to tell her mother the truth, goes to her room and plays here American tape to calm down.
In addition, each character from each story has suffered from a psychological issue endeavored by inequality. These psychological issues faced by the characters in these stories relate to psychological issues still going on today. In “Miss Brill” for example, is a lonely woman that creates the image of her own ideal reality in her mind to make peace with herself. Brill is a single older woman in her time, makes her feel as if she had failed her duties as a woman. Feeling unequal to married women, makes her question her life purpose and psychological needs.
According to Psychology today, women get too comfortable with themselves being alone. During this alone period, too much anxiety builds up causing them to stay in their shell instead of coming out. Like other women, Miss Brill’s Isolation and Routine affect her mental state causing her loneliness. Therefore, a woman’s mind, builds up a defensive mechanism for coping with loneliness. Mental health in women are more likely to happen than men. Due to lower serotonin levels in women, serotonin acts as a mood stabilizer. Furthermore proving that there is biological evidence that women are more susceptible to obtain a mental disease.
On a worldwide scale, majority of women have to deal with social issues on a daily basis. Socially, women are made out to be caretakers and objects. Unlike Mama from “Everyday Use” who claims to be a “big-boned woman with rough, man working hands” (paragraph 4) and a strong believer in heritage, her daughter Dee takes on more of a cultural social issue. Dee tries to become more in touch with her heritage by changing her name to “Wangero Leewanika Kemanjo. Economically, women’s mobility is limited not only physically but with the way society is run throughout history.
More importantly focused on today, there are still places in the world where women can’t even step foot outside their own homes. In Marji’s case, she wasn’t accepted socially in her own culture for wearing sneakers, tight jeans, a Michael Jackson jacket, and revealing too much of her face. In these types of countries, women can’t even step foot outside their doorstep without a man. If so, the women can possibly be harassed by other men even including the spouse. Femicide is also a possibility of punishment or even just for being a female. All in all, women inequality hasn’t changed much over time.
For instance, the Declaration of Independence states, ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal” is still the same today. Further, how can this be in our declaration of Independence when real men and women don’t have the same opportunities? There are still places in the world where men and women can do the same job and not get paid for the same amount of work. Women psychological, social, and economic issues spread globally, including different race and ethnicities. Even women in the early 1900’s like Miss Brill, can still experience psychological issues today.