Female Rhetors

In class today, we briefly touched on the importance of female rhetors and the struggles they go through.  Aspasia was only portrayed through the words of men.  As a result, many of the things that we know about her probably come from misogynistic views of the time.  Today, women have more power to speak in their own right, but that does not mean that society’s outlook on the matter has changed. Meagan gave a great example when she said about the woman who discovered DNA. Even though the calculations were all correct, the male scientists refused to believe it simply because it was a woman who made the discovery.

As a more general example, you can just look to many female authors. J.K. Rowling is a great example. She may be very successful now, but women writers were not taken seriously at the time she was writing Harry Potter; this is why she uses her initials instead. This is a popular theme among female authors who fear their writing may not be taken seriously in the public eye. That’s not to say all women face this, however. In a time when women were not supposed to be writing let alone be involved in any scientific work, Rachel Carson took the world by a storm with Silent Spring; even though she was a woman, that book changed the face of environmentalism and still stands as an inspiration to the environmental movement today. Overall, women may not be taken seriously as much as they should be, but there are many prime examples that you can find of women finding their way through the cracks in one way or another.


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