International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

The Multifaceted Construct of a Married Woman in Flaubert’s Masterpiece
Maria Luisa S. Saministrado, PhD

This paper analyzes the construct of a married woman in Gustave Flaubert’s Madame Bovary in relation to her position in society, relationship with her husband, family and children, the nature of her sexual freedom, and her relationships with other men and women. It explores the feminine condition and her choice amidst issues of disempowerment in relation to patriarchal operations where the married woman links self-fulfillment to romantic ideals and passions. It attempts to re-conceptualize the context of woman and victimhood towards a re-imaging of the “female” with choice and agency despite the presence of societal “forces”. By exploring the heroine’s interplay with these “forces” and its relation to her choice and fate, I demonstrate that the concept of determinism is less applicable in Flaubert’s masterpiece.

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