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The portrayal of women in the novels One Hundred years of Solitude and The House of the Spirits differs greatly In One Hundred Years of Solitude empowerment comes only through age for instance Ursula Iguaran the matriarch of the Buendia family and to some extent Macondo or through strength of sexuality for instance Pilara Tenera the sexual matriarch of Macondo This is in contrast with The House of the Spirits where empowerment comes also through force of conviction as seen with Nivea and also through commercial enterprise as seen with Transito Soto These women represent Allendes own brand of feminism Furthermore those women who except a traditional role of subservience and remain staunch in their conservatism are shown to finish their days alone and mostly forgotten as is seen with Ferula and Nana As the novels were set in first half of the twentieth century in Latin America the role of women in the social hierarchy of this backdrop is worthy of consideration This was a patriarchal society where men of whatever age were always superior in standing to women As a woman aged her position in the social hierarchy would increase Furthermore women had few career choices all were linked to some form of domestic service whether solely as a wife and mother or as a nanny or a combination Religion played a very important role in this predominantly catholic area The role of women as portrayed by the church was somewhat of a paradox simultaneously acknowledging and praising women for the gift of child bearing and yet depicting them as the root of all sin as the temptress inducing thoughts of fornication as well as causing the original sin that being Adam eating the fruit in the Garden of Eden Despite Marquezs well documented anticlericalism this idea in church ideology of the temptress is paralleled in One Hundred Years of Solitude albeit the figure of Eve in her roles is split between the
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