Gender Roles in Chocolat and The Hunger Games

Essay by mollyangelCollege, UndergraduateB+, October 2014

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Melissa Karasack

REL 372-01

Professor Sheridan


Gender Roles in Chocolat and The Hunger Games

Do females have to sit and sew while their male counterparts go hunt and provide sustenance for the family? Should either sex be any the lesser if they do or do not wish to stay in their pre-dictated gender roles? Both Chocolat and The Hunger Games address how society views gender roles in very different ways. Chocolat exploits and capitalizes on gender roles as it inspires women to embrace their femininity as they are comfortable with it. The Hunger Games takes a different approach, completely switching gender roles for the lead male and female characters, showing that neither gender is restricted to society's views on how they should act.

Chocolat follows Vianne, a woman sticking to her ancestry and living a semi-nomadic life with her daughter born out of wedlock, Anouk. As Vianne arrives in a small French village, she finds a very old fashioned populace, anxious to maintain the old ways of the church and led by the mayor, Reynaud.

Vianne is immediately rejected as she embraces her denial of a husband or father for Anouk. Vianne is a very nurturing and protective mother, and she is comfortable in her familial status as a single mother. Not only does she provide security and nurturing for her daughter, but she also is capable of enjoying her life as a single mother, as is evident in her relationship with Roux. Vianne finds a balance between her responsibilities to her background and desires and her daughter. She embraces her role as a feminine, nurturing person in motherhood by making it her own, combining all aspects of life that are important to her while taking on the role that society projects onto her.

Vianne is not only renounced...