Bradstreet and Rowlandson are two phenomenal females who experienced struggles in life but remained firm in upholding virtues and the word of the scripture, following their strong belief in their faith. Their passion and conviction in writing the word and will of God enabled them to survive regardless of the tribulations and contrast of hardship experience they had to endure. The primary purpose of this paper is to compare and contrast the writings of Bradstreet, "An Author to Her Book," and of Rowlandson "The Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration."
During that time, gender roles and representation within the Puritan society were anti-feminist, whereby household duties and caregiving were the primary role of females and had minimal or no freedom at all. In that case, Rowlandson and Bradstreet, as Puritan writers, faced a lot of resistance and struggles.
The role of mother and task as writers was the most significant to both authors. For instance, in her poem, Anne Bradstreet illustrates how she loves and adores her children and spends the most time with them by taking responsibility for teaching the team using her father's collection. She referred to and compared her children as the essential things with her poem writings. The main question in the poem "The Author to Her Book" is about the authorial agency or level of control and power the writer should have over his or her work.
When she compares her work with children, a mother is perceived as loving and caring, as manifested in the opening line, "Who after birth didst by my side remain" (Bradstreet 1). Therefore, it is not easy to separate children and tasks as a Puritans writer from Bradstreet. The narrative of Mary Rowlandson also shows the role of the mother as caring and committed. She was desperate and devastated when she was taken into captivity away from her family and town. According to her, as a woman and mother, it is her responsibility to maintain a high standard of respect within the Puritan society and was expected to raise children in a Godly manner. Her general behaviour also reflects the critical role of women as caregivers. The protector is required to guide children to behave well and always ask God to give her knowledge and wisdom to raise them in a standard way.
Woman in the Puritan society was valued based on their behaviour and the level of submissive they portrayed within the family. A good woman was expected to be well and respectful. By doing so, a woman was honoured and esteemed in the area they resided within the Puritan society. Therefore, their gracious demeanour is considered an essential part of determining the values and virtues of a good woman based on the goodness and sovereignty of God's command.
Based on the role they play mothers within society, both authors had unique connections and similarities based on their faith, hope, and trust in God alongside struggles they experienced as a result of separation and loneliness (Fazzalari, n. p). Their Writings clearly show that they were against the anti-feminist movement and, in most cases, tried as much as they could to abandon and condemn the idea of feminism. What made them survive all the struggles and opposition was their strong and firm religious values and norms; therefore, they overcame all tribulations with similar faith and religious ideology. Rowlandson's narrative was written by herself as a memoir of her eleven weeks' while Under captivity. It was a revelation and encouragement of anti-Indian sentiments during the colonial period. She was torn away from her family and town.
The family, religion, and her people were an arsenal to her. She had never thought that man could take away from her instantly and put her in unfamiliar territory, and subject her to suffering from her youngest daughter. Similarly, Ann Bradstreet lived lonely since his husband had many political responsibilities that made him travel to several colonies on a diplomatic errand, leaving Ann Bradstreet to spend most of her time reading to educate her children.
Regardless of sharing similar faith and religion and beliefs in the doctrine, Bradstreet and Rowlandson had different situations and experiences that motivated them to write. For instance, Ann Rowlandson was kidnapped, unlike Marry Bradstreet, who was left alone at home, taking care of her family. Therefore, they had different experiences and situations that kept them steady to overcome current struggles as Puritan writers. Rowlandson was subjected to humiliation by Indians by making jokes and fun of her. Thus, her narrative was inspired by painful losses such as psychological torture and fears of complete isolation and separations from her family.
In conclusion, Puritan society was highly entrenched in feminism, whereby women were given little freedom to express based on their capacity and abilities. They experienced struggle and opposition to the navigator and became successful. Mary Rowlandson and Anne Bradstreet managed to achieve their goals by having a strong passion and conviction in writing. The scripture enabled them to survive regardless of the tribulations and contrast of hardship experience they had to endure.
Bradstreet, Anne. "The Author to Her Book." The Works of Anne Bradstreet (1967): 221. https://ugeb.pw/gymyl-pipa-ridus.pdfFazzalari
Rocco S. "A Deconstruction of Puritan Ideology Through the Works of John Winthrop, Anne Bradstreet, and Mary Rowlandson." (2019). https://stars.library.ucf.edu/honorstheses/635/Rowlandson
Mary White, and Joseph Rowlandson. The narrative of the captivity and restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson. J. Wilson and son, 1903. https://www.yourknow.com/uploads/books/5dab9694996e4.pdf
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