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Unformatted text preview: Martha Wampler February 26, 2005 A.P English 11 A Death in the Family and the Role of Women A Death in the Family , by James Agee, is a story of change. The novel is set around 1915 and tells of one particular change in the Follet family; the death of the father, Jay. His wife Mary has to deal with his death and become head of the household, much like the way women in this time period took on a new role in society. Much can be learned about the roles of women in both in society and the household through the characters in the novel. Women were always considered the weaker sex and dependent on men, but not all men thought so. Joel, Marys father, is an encouragement for her in the tragedy. Upon hearing the news of Jays death, Joel is very concerned for his daughter (Agee 137). Joel and Mary have a talk later where Joel says to Mary that Youve got to remember that things as bad as this and a hell of a lot worse have happened to millions of people before and that theyve come through it and that you will too (Agee 149). At the same time, Senator Robert Owen encouraged women as well. He said that Women compose one-...
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