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Word Count: 1,361
Some story lines overwhelm their heroes or heroines with good luck Sometimes characters experience misfortune at the beginning of their story but later emerge with their situations resolved Other times however the entire story line works almost completely against the hero or heroines will until the end Both Tess of the dUrbervilles by Thomas Hardy and Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw feature a female character who experiences several turns of unfortunate events Tess Durbeyfield and Eliza Doolittle are widely similar mainly because they both suffer directly from their societies fixed mentalities towards women Eliza suffers from her societys inability to accept her as both a working woman and a proper lady and Tess is forced to deal with her societys inability to accept her as a fallen woman Tess however suffers significantly more in her circumstances from the pressure of the society she lives in for her situation is highly unalterable Elizas circumstances offer her more opportunities and freedom to change her situation and its outcome The most general similarity between the situations of Tess Durbeyfield and Eliza Doolittle is the direct demonstration of the sexual double standard in both of their societies As a lower class woman Elizas relationship with Henry Higgins shows the generally accepted behavior of upper class people towards the specific lower and upper classes during that time Although Henry Higginss behavior is exaggerated it points out a vital element in the mentality of the society Higgins is resentful and condescending towards Eliza for several reasons One of the main reasons is that she is a woman The idea that men have more important priorities and are capable of doing more oppresses Eliza and her ability to get along equally with Higgins This is because Higgins amplifies the idea of womens inferiority when he interacts with Eliza Also Higgins displays his belief in the need for Eliza to act speak and think properly according to the societys definition of proper Likewise
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