WOMEN IN THE YEAR OF THE FLOOD: A MARXIST ECOFEMINIST STUDY

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Number of pages: 165-183
Year-Number: 2021-39

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Abstract

Margaret Atwood's post-apocalyptic novel The Year of the Flood presents a dystopian world that appropriately aligns with the ecofeminist discourse, which emphasizes the parallelism between male domination of women and human domination of nature. In this dystopian future fiction, the (more) advanced capitalism has compelled national states to fall under the control of multinational corporations which rule the world. In such a system, public health and environmental problems have been replaced by other priorities. This new phase of the capitalist system, among many other problems and burdens, leads to the existence of a cultural atmosphere in which having a young and beautiful appearance not only creates psychological pressure due to high social expectations and sexual objectification of women but also the products used for this end cause serious health problems in many cases. This paper examines the life experiences of three women characters; the daughter of an air conditioner dealer who killed himself after becoming unemployed because of his wife's health expenses; the incompatible and emotionally depressed daughter of a murdered executive from the privileged corporate world, and an illegal immigrant who grew up on the streets and eventually became a bio-artist. Their life stories provide rewarding themes for discussion about the current ecofeminist concerns and concepts such as modern technology, economic structure, and belief systems. A detailed reading of the novel shows the debilitating effects of capitalism and environmental problems on society and the individual, especially on working-class women

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