Bianca Saputra, Steinbeck’s East of Eden: Redefining the Evil within Cathy Ames, ILSHS Volume 82, International Letters of Social and Humanistic Sciences (Volume 82)
    <i>East of Eden</i>, published in 1952, has been criticized as both feminist and misogynistic in nature. This contrasting criticism can be attributed to the varied interpretations of female roles in the novel. This paper aims to examine <i>East of Eden</i> using feminist and archetypal theory. Archetypal theory studies roles characters play through fundamental and inherited symbols. These symbols are thematic associations that are common to humanity in general. Feminist theory analyzes texts based on how power is manipulated to establish the dominance or subordination of either gender. In particular, feminist theory studies how females claim, assert or subvert power for themselves. Coupled together, the theories seek to understand how established conventions influence the female experience. By analyzing the intersection between the roles portrayed by the women in the Salinas Valley and societal expectations, this paper intends to explore the influence of tradition on decision making.
    Archetypes, Cathy Ames, <i>East of Eden</i>, Feminism, John Steinbeck, Literary Theory