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My Brilliant Career Essay How far are the film and novel versions of My Brilliant Career feminist in their interpretation My Brilliant Career was a coming of age story based on the Miles Franklins book of the same title It told the journey towards maturity of an idealistic and headstrong girl Sybylla Melvin who had been raised in relative poverty on her fathers property in the Australian bush during the 1890s Her journey was enriched and at times complicated by her encounters with her Aunt Helen her grandmother Bossier Aunt Gussie and Harry Beecham and by her life-learning experiences of squattocracy of Caddagat and Five Bob Downs to the humbler farmlands of the Goulbourne valley At the point of her maturity and at the conclusion of the film Sybylla developed a feminist philosophy that drove her to tear off the social straight jacket confining women like her mother and aunt This heroine of the Australian bush managed to untangle herself from the bourgeois trap of a life with handsome and wealthy Harry Beecham to choose a life of literature The film shows the character of Sybilla to be less headstrong than the book permits us to imagine this leads us unknowingly into the movie expecting her character to be ruder more narrow minded and less caring when Harry Beecham is concerned So in one hand the book seems to be favoured more when feminist ideals are taken into account it is however the movie that tends to create more hype as far as social expectations are concerned The film blows the preconcieved idea of happy endings and women being protagonists only for their physical assets totally out of the water But this was also the main reason that the producer Margaret Fink and her partner Gillian Armstrong were aprehensive that the film would fail at the box office due to the social expectation that the characters Sybylla and Harry should end
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