Life, Liberty, and the Role of Women Some people swear that women are cruel, hectic, and naive; others persist that they are compassionate, soothing, and sophisticated. There is truth in both viewpoints and the controversy can go on endlessly. However, the similarity in both perspectives is that they are all characteristics of a woman at one point in time or another. Either way, women are vital to society in various ways. In Pat Frank’s novel Alas, Babylon, he portrays the theme of the significant role of women in several methods.First, he shows the character Helen Bragg, a mother and a wife, who moves to a different city for the security of her children.
This setting also depicts her internal conflict with her husband Mark, the protagonist. He tells Helen that she only has one job to fulfill which is to leave with her children so they can be in a safer place. Your job is to survive because if you do not the children will not survive (Frank 66). Her external conflict was the actual moving away part.Yet, Helen did what was right to protect her children while listening to her spouse at the same time. This scene demonstrated a part of the traditional role of women in a family.
Furthermore, another duty women tend to take in the household is to make sure that everyone is healthy and eating right. Helen proves this when she starts cooking for Randy and makes him change the way he eats. He was eating steak and vegetables—Helen, disapproving of his cannibal sandwiches, had insisted on cooking for him—and washing it down with orange juice (Frank 124).Helen is shown as a static character throughout the story because her personality does not really change and she is just as kind and caring as she was before the nuclear war damaged their city. She continues to take the responsibility of a housekeeper and mother during the story.
And I will have to stay after to help the girls that don’t get the dance some days too In addition, the task of the woman took on new positions such as being an educator.Alice Cooksey, the librarian, was busy providing books for kids now since there was no other form of entertainment available to them. Watching the car chuff past, Alice reminded herself that this evening she must bring back new books for Ben Franklin and Peyton (Frank 185). For the first time in many years, she felt satisfied and valuable with what she had done in her life even though it was unintentional.
Alice is a dynamic character in the story because her status changes and she becomes more important after most of the city is destroyed.In conclusion, Pat Frank reveals many functions of women in his novel Alas, Babylon. They perform a great deal of roles throughout his book and make a difference in other people’s lives. Both Helen and Alice are influential in their own ways to their society. Moreover, they equally contribute to children’s well-being and education. Overall, the position of women is represented in numerous means and is shown as being imperative to society.