Twilight (The Twilight Saga, #1) Twilight discussion


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Feminist Criticisms of Bella Swan

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Gerd Wouldn't call them completely unreasonable, out of proportion more like.

Truth is that Bella shapes her entire future after the man, eh vampire she loves and it's not all well how that vampire behaves at times against her.


Jacquelyn The reason people are up in arms over it is because they don't feel a woman should shape her life after a man she loves. I'm personally of the whatever floats your boat category. She loves him, she wants to be with him, and the only way to be with him the way she wants is to be a Vampire. That was her choice, and feminists (like myself) need to respect it. I don't criticize a woman for not wanting to work, just because she doesn't want to work as long as she has someone that does not feel burdened by such a desire. Nor do I criticize a woman for wanting to be a housewife because that's what she's always wanted. Feminism is about choice and who are we to judge them? More than likely those same women are congratulating the scientists/doctors/lawyers/astronauts that are paving the way for more women to follow because they see more women going after what they want.
Now for the abusive relationship, those critics have probably never even been in one (and this goes for any 50 Shades critics who argue the same thing over Christian and Ana). Take it from someone who has been in an abusive relationship, the controlling nature of the guys in question is not acceptable in the real world; for Bella it was necessary because of the fictional circumstances, and so to the Bella critics, they just need to calm down. Now for 50 shades it's a little different because there is no fantasy element to the story so it's a little more realistic, and for that situation, I feel Ana holds her own pretty well against Christian's controlling needs and they find a compromise so she has her freedom and Christian feels comfortable accepting the unknown.

Anyway, this post isn't an accusation toward you O.P. because I feel that I am agreeing with you in a very elevated and distant manner, but this is pretty much what I've been thinking every time I hear these criticisms for years.


Jacquelyn Jay wrote: "Jacquelyn wrote: "The reason people are up in arms over it is because they don't feel a woman should shape her life after a man she loves. I'm personally of the whatever floats your boat category. ..."

I hate how people confuse true feminism with this new-age feminism that's all about hating on men and hating on women who maybe want to embrace an older-fashioned lifestyle. I feel like we all need to be respectful of each other's decisions as long as they aren't hurting anyone. :)


message 4: by Gerd (last edited Jun 02, 2016 11:39AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "I'm not entirely sure why people read it as though it's real? Harry Potter shapes his life around Voldemort and that journey; Katniss, around protecting Prim and standing against the Capitol; Frodo, around delivering the ring; Dumbledore and Severus, around protecting Harry; Voldemort, around consolidating power and killing Harry Potter.

Do you see what I mean? ..."


Can't say much about Harry, didn't read that, but the others do shape their lifes after the needs of the many, there's a wee bit of a difference there, for "the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one".


What's wrong with Eddy?
Well, he's sixteen for starters, has been for a long time, will be for a long time. Ed is all for destruction of property (Bella's car) but his idea of protecting her doesn't extend beyond staking out his claim on her (when confronting Jacob).

And let's not talk about Jacob... courting a baby?
Talk about an ick factor.

Then there's the relationship between *would have to look up their names*, you know the one who got maimed by her fiancé, but that's alright because he didn't mean to, it's just that he momentarily lost control, and she still loves him, thank you very much... I think that's it for most readers, subtext quickly becomes text here, if you allow for the Buffy quote.


message 5: by Gerd (last edited Jun 04, 2016 08:33AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "It was an animalistic mishap and of course it’s not okay - nobody ever tries to justify it in the novel,"

Really?
The society he grew up in knew about the dangers involved with the first shift, and yet never bothered to warn him (or Jacob for that matter) before the fact.
I think that tells us all we need to know.

How is Edward being an teenager for eternity not relevant?
If he behaves like an teenager, and his ruled by moodswings like any teenager - as he obviously is, see his "if I can't have you I'll just go and sparkle at hapless tourists to get myself killed, brb" reaction to their break-up - I'd say it plays an important role.
Like every other teenager would... well, yes, that's the problem I guess.
As I say, Ed's problem is being sixteen.


"In every day society, nothing could account for such intrusive actions but in the world of Twilight, they can because it isn’t conventional."

How's that supposed to work?
The world of "twilight" _is_ Ed's every day society. So, if you say it allows for that, you are actually proving the point.

P.S.:
Didn't know you were wanting to be convinced of them being reasonable. :)


Jacquelyn Gerd wrote: "Jay wrote: "It was an animalistic mishap and of course it’s not okay - nobody ever tries to justify it in the novel,"

Really?
The society he grew up in knew about the dangers involved with the fir..."


Edward didn't do that in response to their breakup, it was her (he believed) death and his guilt for, he assumed, causing it that drove him to the Volturi. Edward is a *Seventeen* year old male from a completely different time, but seventeen nonetheless, so yes, he does have the residual moodswings forever, but he also was born in a time when men matured much earlier. What's the saying today? Men don't really grow up until they are 35? Back in the day, men were much more mature because they were expected to be gentlemen just like women were expected to be seen, not heard, and baby factories.


Gerd Jacquelyn wrote: "Back in the day, men were much more mature..."

I wouldn't be to sure about that. Sounds to me like one of those "the good old days" things people like to believe. :D

Seventeen?
Ah, maybe, I only remember that he starts out being a year older than Bella.


Rel8tivity Jay wrote: "Jacob does not court a baby. It is made very clear to readers what ‘imprinting’ means. If that was the nature of what was going on, the Cullens and Bella would not have let Jacob live, as Jacob very clearly purports himself."

While Jacob and SMeyer have both said that the imprinting on the children is platonic, the way the characters are portrayed say it's not as pure as SMeyer would like people to believe.

Platonic means that either party can walk away at any time, and neither Quil or Jacob can stand to be away from their imprintee for long. Jacob goes to great lengths when he hears that the Cullen family are planning to leave - he violates the tribal directive and exposes the existence of werewolves to Charlie.

Platonic also means that they don't hold a claim on the other person. Yet Jacob gives RenFailmee the Quileute equivalent of a promise bracelet. While the bracelet he gave Bella was not described as a promise bracelet, the symbolism is unmistakable, in that he's staking a claim on them. As they say, actions speak louder than words.

Furthermore, remember when Edward makes that unholy bargain with Jacob? He immediately begins fantasizing about sex with Bella. Jacob is still a hormonal male, so it's not realistic that those thoughts turn off. So you have two older males, who know that the relationship can become sexual (through the wolf link they know exactly what Jared, Sam and Paul have been up to), and are given the care of two children. It's just too unsavory to accept as pure.

A little off topic, but this is the point that popped out for me.


Jacquelyn Gerd wrote: "Jacquelyn wrote: "Back in the day, men were much more mature..."

I wouldn't be to sure about that. Sounds to me like one of those "the good old days" things people like to believe. :D

Seventeen?
..."


You can look right in the book they both start out at 17. That's why when she turns 18 in New Moon she freaks out so bad.

Now as for the behavior of 17 year old men back in 1918, more research may help for that, which unfortunately I don't have time for even though it does sound like a neat topic. :( But based on Meyer's description of Edward as a human, it sounded like he was too focused on the war effort to think about romance or being a wild lad.


message 10: by Gerd (last edited Jun 04, 2016 05:13AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jacquelyn wrote: "You can look right in the book they both start out at 17. That's why when she turns 18 in New Moon she freaks out so bad...."

I'm pretty sure I remember it being noted in twilight that Edward is a year older than Bella when they first meet.


Jacquelyn wrote: "Back in the day, men were much more mature because they were expected to be gentlemen just like women were expected to be seen, not heard, and baby factories..."

As an aside, am I the only one who thinks that to sounds like an awful oxymoron?
You can't be both a gentleman _and_ think a woman's sole purpose is to procreate.


Jacquelyn Gerd wrote: "Jacquelyn wrote: "You can look right in the book they both start out at 17. That's why when she turns 18 in New Moon she freaks out so bad...."

I'm pretty sure I remember it being noted in twiligh..."


... At this point, I'm pretty sure you are trolling me so I'm going to say buh-bye. And if you aren't trolling me then if nothing else, watch the g-damned movie, their ages is the one thing they got right.

And as to the second statement, I will leave you with a shaking head and allow you to continue pondering that amongst yourself.


message 12: by Gerd (last edited Jun 04, 2016 08:19AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jacquelyn wrote: "... At this point, I'm pretty sure you are trolling me so I'm going to say buh-bye.

Buh-bye then, but nah, just a faulty memory of the book.


And if you aren't trolling me then if nothing else, watch the g-damned movie, their ages is the one thing they got right...."

Now, now, there's no reason to turn to profanity over a simple age question, is there?


Jacquelyn Gerd wrote: "Jacquelyn wrote: "... At this point, I'm pretty sure you are trolling me so I'm going to say buh-bye.

Buh-bye then, but nah, just a faulty memory of the book.


And if you aren't trolling me then..."


Glad to see it was faulty memory over the age thing, which wasn't a huge deal, but disappointed you were not trolling me over the second part of that response. The answer is no.
That is a ridiculously outdated way to think of a woman and shame on anyone who does.


****Kelly***** Gerd wrote: "Jay wrote: "I'm not entirely sure why people read it as though it's real? Harry Potter shapes his life around Voldemort and that journey; Katniss, around protecting Prim and standing against the Ca..."

I don't really think people hate Bella because she relied so much on Edward. I think they hate her because her only character trait was how obsessed she was with Edward. She literally just stayed in her room for six months when Edward broke up with her.


message 15: by Gerd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd ****Kelly***** wrote: "She literally just stayed in her room for six months when Edward broke up with her..."

Well, yes, but she's seventeen and for all we know never been in love before, so I think that's a strange criticism of her character as it was one of the things that made her feel real to me (I took a lot more than just a couple months to get over my first love).


message 16: by Gerd (last edited Jun 06, 2016 09:06AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "Well, of course I am wanting to be convinced of that..."

Can't do, sorry. :D

The problem, as I see it, is that some readers take context (and missed opportunities by the author to weave in more complexity) and an, I feel, kind of snobbish "a book has to teach the reader a lesson" approach and from there arrive to their conclusions, some of which I feel have merit (Jacob's society is an unhealthy one as there is no logical reason for them to risk their youngsters hurting others by not telling them right out what they are, and it's a very small step from there to infer domestic abuse from what Stephenie likely just but in for tragic effect).

The "a book has to teach a lesson" school of thought is most likely the main crux there, because what, if we approach it thus, can twilight teach us?
Apart from that the author obviously likes to read or at least grew up on reading trashy Romances (not dissing them, I read those myself at times) and build her own story around those reading experiences, not much actually.

So hence why I wouldn't call them unreasonable.
Because they do have reason, in all fairness we do still live in times in which girls grow up receiving troublesome messages about the whole "girl" thing. And Bella is, mostly, a "girl" character - and Edward isn't exactly a mentally healthy partner, though I guess living that long as a teenager would take its toll on anyone (though, personally I gripe a lot more over Jacob who is given as a molesting and abusive character. Kissing Bella against her expressed will, using emotional blackmail - Jacob is the very model of the questionable Romance "Hero").

But I also agree that these concerns by and far have gotten blown out of proportion.
Had twilight not had such an unexpected success, no one would have cared over it. And the more important question which people that feel there's something seriously wrong with twilight, not just something incidentally, should rather ask what it is that made this one book such a huge, if controverse, success among young readers.

Truth is, I dare claim, a lot of us can't withstand a fine spun damsel in distress story, hell, make it a coarse spun and it will still work.
That's what a huge part of Romances hinge on and it makes up an important part of twilight. :)


message 17: by Gerd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "Just because Jacob symbolises his commitment to protecting Renesmee who, by the way, is perfectly happy to have Jacob around through her life. She's not made one claim to the contrary and for the most part, she's old enough to consent. Again, I do not see the issue..."

The issue is context.
Jacob himself claims to have "imprinted" on Bella, and uses that as an exuse to molest her. Also we established that Quileute society is an unhealthy one. Further Renesmee grows up being indoctrinated with the idea that Jacob _is_ her soulmate, they are "destined" to be together no free will included.

Again, here's a huge flaw to be conceived in the authors plotting/writing.


message 18: by Gerd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "And Edward matures as the time passes, even though he does not age."

That's a difficult one.
I'd say no, logically he can't mature, because if he did this really was one creepy sort of love story. The whole concept of twilight hinges on them being on a par, two teenagers that fall in love - one of which just so happens to be an immortal.

If Ed matures, then we deal with a 140 year old guy in the body of a teenager falling for a innocent young girl ... *shudder*
(And isn't that sort of the exact problem of the young vampire girl in "Interview with"?)


message 19: by Gerd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "I'm pretty sure he'd respect that even though it would hurt him so much inside..."

About as "pretty sure" as he would respect Bella who he claimed to love?
As I say, context, and Jacob didn't show any sign of respect towards Bella, so I see no solid reason why he should respect Renesmee.


message 20: by Gerd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "Then I refuse to debate with you further - you won't actually make any solid, evidenced, claims..."

Didn't see much evidenced claims on your side either.
It all comes down to what we believe about those characters - and what you believe of being mostly feminist criticism. :D


message 21: by Gerd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd Jay wrote: "No, I think the flaw is the fact you're manipulating information out of context and stating things as a matter of fact although they are not in the book."

To my knowledge Jacob tells Bella that he didn't know about the change before it came, nor did he know about the dangers involved, he may be a scumbag but in this instance, because it never gets negated, we have to suppose that he tells her the truth.

Jacob claims to love Bella, then forces a kiss on her (that's molesting in my book), here we can tell he's a liar because his action contradicts what he tells her - later in eclips he uses emotional blackmail on her, further contradicting his supposed love, threatening to let himself get killed in the coming fight because of her.

Then Jacob "imprints" on a baby, his whole life from this moment we have to assume is centered around the idea that she's his mate - given Jacob's behaviour against Bella that's one scary thought.


Seems the only part we can agree on is that Bella wasn't unrealistic for a seventeen year old. :D


KarmaSc0rpi0n I wouldn't call the criticism about Bella unfair because they are true on a lot of levels. Bella has no identity outside of Edward. He came into her life and all interest, hobbies or anything that resembles depth of character disappears and becomes about Edward. That's why she had such a break down in New Moon, her identity leaves so she clings on to what little she has of it. Then she finds a new person to wrap her identity around which happens to be another man. But thing is that's not really anti-feminist, it's just anti-independent woman. She's severely codependent and the book's target audience is young impressional people who's concept of romance is developed from these types of novels which is why it's so scrutinized. This codependency also wouldn't be such an issue if the book hadn't claimed her to be independent while obviously contradicting itself.

As for the abusive relationship thing I do see where people are coming from because Edward often controls where she goes, who she hangs out with and all around let's him have a power over her that contradicts her claimed stubbornness. For most of the series she has little to no support system outside of Edward and his family and he often goes against her direct wishes. And these are all out of context but when you put the facts together you realize that this "epic" love story features one of the most unhealthy relationships of all time. At least with Romeo and Juliet Shakespear makes it known by the end that it was not a love story where this fails to do so. But again this wouldn't be much of an issue if the target audience was adults who have actual experiences with love and can take this completely at entertainment value. People apply it to real life because the vast majority of the targeted audience will apply it to what they look for in their future relationships and theres a good portion of those people that won't even realize the unhealthy relationship they're aiming for.


message 23: by Rel8tivity (last edited Jun 07, 2016 02:18AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Rel8tivity Jay wrote: "Rel8tivity wrote: "Jay wrote: "Jacob does not court a baby. It is made very clear to readers what ‘imprinting’ means. If that was the nature of what was going on, the Cullens and Bella would not ha..."

Allow me to present two items:

If the human is young, the werewolf becomes the perfect platonic playmate and protector. As the human ages and changes, the werewolf instinctively switches roles to fulfill the human's needs. The Twilight Saga: The Official Illustrated Guide; pg. 311

the criminal activity of becoming friends with a child, especially over the internet, in order to try to persuade the child to have a sexual relationship. Cambridge Dictionary, the definition of child grooming.

Granted, the dictionary definition of platonic says there is an absence of sex. And by that technicality, this relationship is platonic. But the mere absence of sex isn't enough to make this situation acceptable.

What do Claire & RenFailmee need when they are infants and toddlers? A caregiver, and a protector. Jacob and Quil are in the position of being a caregiver and a father figure. The promise bracelet is more than a commitment of protection. Jacob gave Bella a bracelet with a carved wolf as a statement of his desire and his intentions upon her. Basically he's marking his territory. He places the same kind of symbol on the child that he did on the mother. Regardless of whether he's thinking of sex or not, the action is the same, and is symbolic of marking his territory.

In most of society, it's not alright for a person that is a caregiver, to claim one of their charges as a potential sexual partner. Maybe in some fringe Mormon sects that might be accepted. But where I come from, any adult making a claim on a child for the future is disgusting. It doesn't matter if they're not attempting to engage in sexual activity with them at the moment, the claim was enough. Imprinting was fine when SMeyer made it between mature people of like age. And while this case is not technically child grooming, it's close enough that it crossed the line.

You presume that I'm a critic of Twilight. Do you see my rating of it? I liked Twilight. It's Breaking Dawn I have a problem with. Whether or not Jacob & RenFailmee are platonic is actually a smaller issue beside the fact that RenFailmee is a plot hole who can't exist. So 3/4 of the book is based on a fallacy of the highest order. The question of whether the relationship is appropriate pales besides that.

You also presume that you can tell me my experience was invalid. Everybody brings a different perspective to their consumption of art, and it contributes uniquely to their experience. If I see symbols and meanings in a painting that you don't, does that make my experience ridiculous? Does it make yours wrong? No. It just makes them different.


Jacquelyn Rel8tivity wrote: "Jay wrote: "Rel8tivity wrote: "Jay wrote: "Jacob does not court a baby. It is made very clear to readers what ‘imprinting’ means. If that was the nature of what was going on, the Cullens and Bella ..."

Also, Jacob I think mentioned that if she grows up and she finds someone else she is interested in, he will have no choice but to respect her decision and simply be her friend. Her bonded werewolf has no choice but to be what is best for her, so chances are that the way things were going to turn out if things went south with that silly battle would be that if he had to be like a father figure, I'm sure she would be more interested in a best friendship from him, and he's have to be okay with that. As it is, I'm sure that he is her best friend now and that one day she will make her choice.

There are plenty of stories where one character was with the other character from a young age, watched them grow up, and then fell in love with them in an adult way once she reached an acceptable age. He's an angel who is over 500 years old, and the girl reincarnates every time she dies in battle. He will find her every incarnation and stay close by to protect her in childhood, make sure she is happy and left alone by the demons they hunt, and then once she hits that age of 16/17, he falls in love with her all over again. There is never a doubt in my mind that his attraction, while she is a little girl, remains with the young woman she always grows into, and so while she's younger, he probably is just enchanted in the way that lots of people are by children, because children are silly and do hilariously charming things without even meaning to.

So do you oppose most books that have this kind of relationship between the love interests?
Not meaning to attack, just bringing up another point. :)


Rel8tivity Jacquelyn wrote: "Her bonded werewolf has no choice but to be what is best for her, so chances are that the way things were going to turn out if things went south with that silly battle would be that if he had to be like a father figure, I'm sure she would be more interested in a best friendship from him, and he's have to be okay with that. As it is, I'm sure that he is her best friend now and that one day she will make her choice."

I suppose the imprintee having all the choices was supposed to soften the gross factor, in that the wolf will not force them. It's still not good enough for me. Once Jacob placed his claim on RenFailmee, he crossed the line.

"So do you oppose most books that have this kind of relationship between the love interests?"

I think "oppose" would be too strong of a word. If an author wants to write a story like that, it's their right to do so. I simply would choose not to read it, if I knew that was the nature of the story. Not every book is everybody's cup of tea.


Pricilla Gutierrez Jay, you've argued beautifully.


message 27: by Gerd (new) - rated it 4 stars

Gerd KarmaSc0rpi0n wrote: "I wouldn't call the criticism about Bella unfair because they are true on a lot of levels. Bella has no identity outside of Edward. He came into her life and all interest, hobbies or anything that ..."

Well put.


Rel8tivity wrote: "The promise bracelet is more than a commitment of protection. Jacob gave Bella a bracelet with a carved wolf as a statement of his desire and his intentions upon her. Basically he's marking his territory. He places the same kind of symbol on the child that he did on the mother. Regardless of whether he's thinking of sex or not, the action is the same, and is symbolic of marking his territory."

That's an excellent point.


Rel8tivity Gerd wrote: "That's an excellent point."

Thank you. The way I see it, this marking of territory is problematic for a number of reasons.

SM insists in multiple sources that imprinting is perfectly innocent. Yet the fact remains that Jacob has done something that is not NEEDED by his imprint. This raises a couple possibilities. Either:

1) SM wrote that wrong, and Jacob is acting out of character.

-OR-

2) More self-motivated behavior is possible than was originally stated, and the door is open for darker possibilities. Like child grooming.

Because clearly this marking of territory is completely self-motivated. A statement of "she's mine" is not something that a child NEEDS when they're pre-pubescent. On the other hand, it IS something that a male of reproductive age would do to secure a mate.

If the wolf is capable of self-motivated behavior it is possible that, over time, they could influence their impressionable imprint toward a relationship of a more intimate nature. Since the restriction on behaving only in a way that the imprint needs is no longer absolute, then the wolf is free to proceed, regardless of the age. That's still not okay. Statutory rape is still the law, whether both parties consent or not.


Kasia Radzka I love the Twilight series and the characters. Bella starts out as an outcast teen who doesn't really know her place in society. She doesn't feel like she fits in anywhere until she meets Edward, who is also an outcast for obvious reasons. But as you move through the story, Bella isn't shaping her future around Edward, but finding herself through various experiences. She makes a choice out of love to become a vampire. People often make tough choices when it comes to love. But she in no way allows Edward to dominate her or be abusive towards her. He comes across as rather overprotective and old fashioned which is quite refreshing in a time where chivalry is disappearing. In the end, Bella turns out to be the strong one, the one making the decision, and when she does become a vampire she becomes the dominant one in the relationship and more in control. She finds a place where she belongs going from awkward to awesome. And don't we all want to be a part of a relationship, friendship, or community which brings out the best of us?
But that's just my two cents worth.


message 30: by Mari (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mari Does it matter? Less then twelve percent of women in the USA consider themselves Feminists. Feminism is not about equality. and this argument proves it. Its about forcing a certain model of womanhood that is demanding, uncooperative, and entitled, down our collective throat. I think Bella is a great role model. She knows what she wants, and despite what other people want , she makes sure she gets it. Edward wants her to be human, Her dad wants her to stay at home, Certain boys want to date her…but she makes sure that she gets what is important to her. However, she does this with honestly, dignity, and without emotional outbursts. Also, she is never casual. I have no doubt that the only reason she opened herself up to being with Edward was because he was someone that she felt she needed in her life forever.


Jacquelyn Mari wrote: "Does it matter? Less then twelve percent of women in the USA consider themselves Feminists. Feminism is not about equality. and this argument proves it. Its about forcing a certain model of womanho..."

Everything you described right there IS feminism. Feminism IS about equality. It's about raising one sex up, not tearing the other down. When I, a woman, am expected to behave a certain way because of what is between my legs that is not expected of men... that's simply not fair. Prime example; what are men in their early 20s expected to do? Go to college to get an education in order to land a big important job he can brag about and pay the bills with, and yes party and mingle a little bit. What are women expected to do in their early 20s? Well, my grandmothers always want to know when I'm getting married, and why I'm not married yet. I always tell them I'm getting my education first, and they always tell me that it's good and all to do that, but I need to worry about finding myself a man too. Also, my girlfriend, (aka, the reason they wonder why I'm still not married) is a waitress, and she frequently has older men telling her that she shouldn't need to work so hard. If she marries rich she wouldn't have to work at all, or could work less which is offensive on two levels. Why should she marry someone for money in this day and age when she is clearly capable of taking care of herself? Marrying rich is a painfully outdated concept that apparently is still circulating. Second, that because she's a woman she is unhappy with her current situation or wouldn't want to work? My girlfriend is anything but a domestic housewife (not that there is anything wrong with housewives, that is simply not the lifestyle she or I would choose for ourselves). So people who say equality is here need a serious reality check. A day in the life of the modern woman still shows some sexism and is why feminism is necessary. This new wave of feminism is a whole other ballpark. This third wave is destroying the feminism message with domineering superiority and over-victimizing of women (which I argue is sexist within itself.) I personally want the feminist movement to revert to the "second wave," but keep the speaking up for mens issues and keep those discussions going. For men, why are they expected to party until they are in their late 20s, and when they marry in their early 20s their life is "over" or if they are in their early 30s and are still unmarried they are pieces of trash? That's a painful double standard. Also, that men have to be emotional rocks and from an early age being emotional means being a sissy (which could start yet another discussion about the sexism of doing anything "like a girl" or acting "like a girl" but I'll spare you.) Anyway, yes, feminist readings of modern stories is important just like the world still needs equaling out between the sexes (aka feminism).


message 32: by KarmaSc0rpi0n (last edited Oct 23, 2016 09:43PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

KarmaSc0rpi0n Mari wrote: "Does it matter? Less then twelve percent of women in the USA consider themselves Feminists. Feminism is not about equality. and this argument proves it. Its about forcing a certain model of womanho..."

Firstly: I don't know where you're getting that statistic from, but I suggest before making such a bold statement you prvide proof to back it up. Such as the article: Less Than a Third of Women are Feminist which sites that 26% of women label themselves as feminists and it gives the reasons why which is that most of which don't understand feminism. There's also this article from the Washington Post What Americans Think of Feminism Today that took their poll from people more educated on feminism and that statistc was that about 60% of women called themselves feminists. These are from the beginning of the year so they might have changed, but I'm pretty sure it's more recent than from what you're pulling from.

Secondly: Your reasoning for Bella proves that you don't understand what feminism is. Feminism is about having the ability to choose a path that isn't stereotypically expected of you because you're a woman . Those choices you listed off aren't things that are expected of a woman, they're just things people wanted for her. Saying no to dating someone isn't some feministic choice, it's just a decision she makes because she eventually chooses one to date anyways. The only way that be some kind of feminist statement was if she was choosing not to date because she was trying to prove that she didn't need a man which is something she clearly doesn't do. And again staying human has absolutely nada to do with a feministic choice because it's not a political statement. What all of her choices are geared toward is her being so obsessed with one man/vampire that nothing else matters which isn't some crime against feminism either, it's just pathetic. It's not like she actually thinks of any other options which in a weird sense means she's limiting herself, not society.
(On a complete side Charlie doesn't expect her to stay home. Unless you're talking about when he grounded her for abrubtly leaving country which is completely in his right as a parent. The only thing he expects of her is to go to college, get a career and build a life of her own which again isn't something to do with feminism it's just what a parent wants for their child.)

Lastly: Bella's not a good role model and it's not because of feminism, it's because of her codependent tendencies that resemble that of an addict. Bella was so dependent on Edward that she couldn't function without him in New Moon and it's not like she could lean on other people because she built her entire life and support system around him, so once that's gone she's gone. Only saving grace was Jacob, another person latched onto to almost debilitating proportions. It's like she just simply switch from heroin to alcohol, slightly better, but still bad for her health. How is teaching people that you have no worth without a significant other a good example? Bella is a character that should only be taken at entertainment value as far as role models go.


Erin *Proud Book Hoarder* Jay wrote: "What are your views on the feminist criticisms of Meyer's 'Twilight', and particularly Bella Swan's character?

Personally, I think they're completely unreasonable.

Two such criticisms are:

1. Be..."


The feminine criticisms are a bit silly and far-fetched for me with this.

For one thing, Bella isn't acting like a doormat - she's acting like a normal teenage girl who is head over heels with her boyfriend and vulnerable. A lot of us go through that yicky stage

In the second case, it's not abusive - if anything, Bella is the master manipulator in the relationship, especially shown in the third book, who uses the emotional card and tricks to control Edward. If there's abuse, it comes through it's the other way around. That said, I don't see actual abuse on either side.


message 34: by Liz (new) - rated it 2 stars

Liz Gerd wrote: "Wouldn't call them completely unreasonable, out of proportion more like.

Truth is that Bella shapes her entire future after the man, eh vampire she loves and it's not all well how that vampire beh..."


THIS.

Bella herself also treats and judges others in very bad ways; which would be great if it were intentional, like a character flaw, but it's painted as being A-Okay by Meyer's writing.

Even if you're not feminist at all, and think everyone should abide by old-fashioned gender roles, you should still have a problem with how Edward treats Bella and how Bella treats everyone who isn't Edward.


message 35: by Liz (new) - rated it 2 stars

Liz Mari wrote: "Does it matter? Less then twelve percent of women in the USA consider themselves Feminists. Feminism is not about equality. and this argument proves it. Its about forcing a certain model of womanho..."

Okay, this entire paragraph was both hilarious and sad to read at the same time. Especially "I think Bella is a great role model" and "she does this with honestly, dignity, and no emotional outbursts."

Dear lord.


message 36: by Liz (new) - rated it 2 stars

Liz No doubt there are some radical "feminists" who freak out over Bella enjoying housework and only wanting to marry Edward, which I agree is dumb. If a woman likes that stuff there is nothing wrong with that.

HOWEVER most people, feminist or not, have far more legitimate problems with Bella. She is dependent on Edward to the point of going catatonic when he leaves her in "New Moon," at which point he's only her recent high school boyfriend. She later does absurdly dangerous things so she can hallucinate him, and to say nothing of how she lets him be so controlling and has no problem with him stalking her and "watching her sleep" before they even started dating.

And then there's the way Bella treats others, who she deems less interesting or special. In the first book she manipulates Jacob's feelings for her to get information on Edward, knowing full well what she is doing. Upon learning about the Volturi chomping down on groups of tourists yearly, and other vampires killing people in her own hometown, she makes no effort to warn any of the other humans. She desperately wants to be a vampire to be with Edward forever, even knowing that it will mean never seeing her family again and letting them think she's dead.

GRANTED, all of these things could be FANTASTIC traits for the characters if they had been intentional, and were treated like character flaws. Really, the tragedy of "Twilight" is how interesting it could have been, had Edward and Bella been indented as antiheroes.

Edward in particular could have been fascinating, maybe IS fascinating, if you accept his behavior is at least a little bit F-ed up, and consider why it is that way. He died in the Spanish Flue epidemic, instead of joining the army like he wanted to: he wanted to die a hero, and instead died hopeless in a hospital with *no control.* This IMO explains why he is so controlling of Bella, and so over-compensating with his masculinity.

Really, if you want, you can choose to read Bella as an unreliable narrator, and the series becomes a lot more interesting.

All of that said, it's the fact that Meyer didn't treat these flaws like flaws, and presents the behavior as A-okay, that people (feminist or not) have a problem with it.

Also, to anyone trying to pull the "they hate Bella for being feminine!" card, if that were the case I don't think the Disney princess franchise would be so explosively popular. Fiction is jam-packed with traditionally feminine heroines and they're perfectly popular. Most people's gripes with Bella are from her behaviors, not her preferences.


message 37: by Liz (new) - rated it 2 stars

Liz Bessie wrote: "For me, the biggest problem with Bella is how she judges others. In a way, Bella represents how a lot of people create thoughts and reputations for the ones around them: Solely on looks. Admit, she..."

I can't believe I forgot to mention how shallow Bella is. But yes.

And to all the fangirls venomously defending Edward's actions towards her, I ask them, would you be okay with a fat, bald man telling you "I've been sneaking to your house and watching you sleep?"


message 38: by Dai'John (new) - added it

Dai'John George Jay wrote: "What are your views on the feminist criticisms of Meyer's 'Twilight', and particularly Bella Swan's character?

Personally, I think they're completely unreasonable.

Two such criticisms are:

1. Be..."


In this case, I do not believe it was intended to be perceived as an abusive, male-dominant relationship. I believe that the purpose of Bella being harmed numerous times was to display her courage and strength to put up with it and live through it.

Also, it also means she is loyal and accepting because Edward knew of the risk and is often seen as the "Evil Figure Good Heart" archetype. So, her putting up with their relationship in general and Edward in his natural persona is quite remarkable. So instead of putting the book down for beating up on Bella, it should be noticed for its display of feminine pride.

Jay wrote: "What are your views on the feminist criticisms of Meyer's 'Twilight', and particularly Bella Swan's character?

Personally, I think they're completely unreasonable.

Two such criticisms are:

1. Be..."



message 39: by [deleted user] (new)

Umm... Edward is 17, not 16.


message 40: by [deleted user] (new)

And Bella 18.


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