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Images of Women Major Barbara A Passage to India and the poetry of TS EliotThe Victorian Era was a difficult and confusing time for women and their trials are reflected in the literature of the time Although the three pieces of literature being discussed are not entirely about women they shed light on the Victorian ideal of women and the ideals of the authors who created these women characters In contrasting and comparing women in Major Barbara A Passage to India and TS Eliots poetry two key points will be discussed distinct archetypes of women and how the absence of women is used to signify their importanceThere are four different archetypes of women present in the three works 1 the first being the heroines The heroines are characterized by their success in dealing with the limitations of spiritual and physical matters eventually accepting these limitations or reconciling their differences into their lives Mrs Moore is the heroine of A Passage to India She is depicted as a heroine because of a small event that does not concern her personally She comes to India just to further the happiness of her children and due to the circumstances sacrifices the integrity of her own self She is at first very compassionate with a love that extends over all creation religion and every living thing Shahane 29 She lives in a world where everything is in harmony until her perfect vision is shattered by her experience in the Marabar Caves After she enters the cave Mrs Moore hears an echo which seems to whisper Everything exists nothing has value 2 Collier 2 This seems to rob Mrs Moore of everything she holds valuable her spiritual life and her relationships with family and friends Shahane 87 Everything has lost its meaning Mrs Moore finally sees all the troubles in the world and how insignificant the world is Despite her negative outlook after the Marabar Caves
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