Gender Roles In Bilbo

Words: 1143
Pages: 5

As the novel progresses, the reader can see a significant change in character within Bilbo. It is undeniable the character growth that occurs as Bilbo moves from being a timid hobbit living a simplistic life, to becoming the brave hero who helps defeat the dragon. The journey allows Bilbo to discover his inner passions, his love for adventure, and ability to lead. Even though Bilbo transforms into a stereotypical male character, the connotation differs greatly from the female counterpart. Drawing again from Taylor’s content analysis, words used to describe the typical male carried positive connotations such as ‘strong,’ ‘brave,’ and ‘rational’ (309). Thus, the association of risk with bravery promotes stepping out of one’s comfort zone. …show more content…
Though both projecting women as more simplistic beings, each novel goes about it in different manners. Within Anne, women are not only put down to each other; the whole story reinforces the traditional role of a woman. Living in a safe, domestic town and keeping dialogue light, Anne of Green Gables endorses the idea of a soft, nurturing woman. Although Anne does not adhere to this description initially, as the book wears on it is shown that she too has an interest in boys and fashion. Anne is also depicted as an outsider, so any positive connotation that could have come with her unique style is ruined by associating it with being different and made fun of. On the opposite end of the spectrum, The Hobbit does not reinforce gender stereotypes so much as removes the opportunity for them altogether. By eliminating the feminine from the story and providing a novel about how danger culminates in heroism, The Hobbit effectively erases the need for women. This text demonstrates that through purposeful conversations and trustworthy alliances, an individual can achieve anything- so long as they are male. Furthermore, regarding character traits, The Hobbit consisted of men who possessed masculine traits only; Anne of Green Gables, however, presented Anne as having both feminine (emotional, sensitive) and masculine (assertive, bold) traits. This is unsurprising, particularly when looked at under the lens of Diekman and Murnen’s work that found “that although girls were shown to possess masculine traits, boys were not shown to possess feminine traits”