In the early 1800s, white men who owned property and paid taxes controlled everything, such as the government, money, and women. Because of their power, women were properties that fathers gave to the highest bidder, and these women had to surpass expectations to be chosen. In literature, men dominated lead positions, while women were given belittling roles. Near 85 years later, men still had power, but women wanted more in life than high social status and money. The literary world portrayed women who want to be reckless and free to direct their lives. Today's society women strive to be leaders, and to prove they can accomplish and exceed in a difficult environment. Many fictional novels today have leading women roles, who excel in places men do not. The progression of women's roles in society has been expanding, although men still hold most of the power, women are gaining more leadership roles and positions. These feminist views have changed not only in our culture, but in literature as well. For example, Kate Chopin's, The Awakening, helped usher in the feminist views for women today.
Buying the Beauty Queen.
Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, written in 1813, characterized the Bennet sisters as women who needed men to keep their social rank and money. After they were married, the men only cared for their own happiness and power, as Mr. Collins declares, ". but if she is really headstrong and foolish , I know not whether she would altogether be a very desirable wife to a man in my situation, who naturally looks for happiness in the marriage state. If therefore she actually persist in rejecting my suit, perhaps it were better not to force her into accepting me, because if liable to such defects of temper, she could not contribute much to my felicity." (Austen 82). He wanted a wife with money and education, but wanted her to forget about her own opinions and ideas. Like many men during the period, Mr.