My favorite project is by Joshua Gammel. I enjoyed reading what felt like a rebuttal of their own work. He said “The summary was problems with men and “manly” thinking basically. An issue with my paper, just like medieval literature as a whole, I completely ignored women.” I think it is very powerful to call out your own work and the issues you found in it. Writers of this time were guilty of creating fanatical literature oriented with male exploration, discovery, etc. I also enjoyed Joshua’s comparing of feminism to the BeanBoozled jelly beans as there are so many different variations and tastes, if you will, or modern feminism, post-modern feminism, etc.
In their paper, Joshua claims that “Cavendish uses the Empress to show how a female would rather explore these cultures and collaborate with them rather than just stealing from them all together.” I enjoyed the complexity of such a statement because while this could be the case, sometimes external exploration and collaboration of a culture is unwanted, unwelcome, and even damaging to the people w the culture belongs to. However, being that their essay is on the good, the bad, and the ugly, I would say that Cavendish does fall into the good.
Next, I would like to address the Othello component in this essay. I have never sat to think about feminism in Othello. While reading it, I was more so distracted by Othello and how he was manipulated countlessly while being a military general and for someone who had to be smart, tactical, and aware of the enemies next move, he failed to consider that people closer to him (not Desdemona) who was actually his enemy. Joshua says that Othello was a bad example of feminism and after reading his writing on it, I can’t help but to agree. Desdemona being a strong, independent woman still had to confine to the beliefs and desires of her father and her husband.
Finally, Joshua addresses Paradise Lost—what he considers to be the ugly example of feminism. Although I did enjoy Paradise Lost, I can see how it might be a poor example. For one, Sin’s character was one that was so strange to me. She was Satan’s daughter yet still wanted to be his lover. Her son that came from their having sex, raped her countlessly and forced her to have his children. Then she works along side him and seems to still want the best for the both of them. Even after Satan abandoned her, she still wanted to do only what he wanted of her rather than what God wanted of her which is interesting to say the least. Then Eve, being the deviant who ate the fruit first damning all man and convincing Adam that he had to do the same because of his love for her is, in fact, a solid example of misogyny.
Oversll, I really enjoyed Joshua’s writing because it helped me come to a few realizations about the texts we read this semester and helped further expand my thinking of said texts.