Boys And Girls By Alice Munro

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The foxes as a representation of the daughter’s life in Alice Munro’s “Boys and Girls” Throughout history, patriarchy plays a significant part in a woman’s life, which instead of ameliorating their talents, inhibits them. Living in such a restricted environment forces women to fulfill gender roles and stereotypes set out by society. In the short story “Boys and Girls”, Alice Munro describes the life of a young girl who is confined in her own home through her experiences with her father’s foxes. The foxes are raised for their fur in a restrained environment controlled by the father. They are the main living source of the family, and are kept in pens and remain nameless until they survive their first year. Similarly, the daughter lives in an…show more content…
The daughters’ description of pens is crucial in understanding how she feels about her own life. The excerpt “Alive, the foxes inhabited a world my father made for them” (Munro 24) explains that both the foxes and the daughter live in a world that the father controls. Also, by using words such as “High guard fences” (24) and “padlocked at night” (24) Munro is emphasizing that the foxes and the daughter have no way out of this constricting world. Despite the restrained nature of their existence, foxes pens are described as “tidy and ingenious” (24) and the father is “tirelessly inventive” (24) which demonstrates that the father takes good care of the foxes and finds new ways to keep them healthy. Yet despite all this, it is hard to ignore the fact that the foxes are stripped off their freedom, which also reflects the daughter’s life. Throughout the story, it might seem like the father is providing the daughter with all that she may need, but he is also taking away the one thing she truly desires, which is the freedom to be her own person. The analogous situation of both foxes and the daughter depict the male dominance of the father over both of them in the same…show more content…
Throughout the entire story, Munro clearly illustrates how the lives of the foxes depict the life of a woman in a male dominant society. Also, Munro ingeniously shows that even though the daughter is not constrained by physical cages as the foxes, she still feels trapped in her own house. Despite the fact that is she not locked up, she still feels stripped off her freedom due to all the limitations that are placed on women in the society. Therefore, in the end, the daughter slowly capitulates to society’s expectations and loses her true desire of being more than just a

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