Thread: Literary We by Yevgeny Zamyatin
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Old 12-01-2012, 06:40 PM   #30
fantasyfan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by issybird View Post
A trivial point that I forgot: what about women being only vowels? Does this mean that women are roughly only 20% of the population? It seems obvious that the women are sexually dominant--that they are the instigators/choosers and have multiple partners. We know that sex isn't for procreation, so what are the implications of these aspects of social engineering? Is it because in the 1920s, women were not assumed to be as productive, but that some women were deemed necessary to satisfy a vestigial sex drive? Or perhaps they wanted to keep some women as a fail-safe, in case of a widespread failure in the means of procreation?
Here's a theory off the top of my head--it represents some rather vestigial thoughts on my part about the use of vowels as sexual symbols. They're only ideas which I'm not completely sure of myself. Feel free to hammer away at them.

If women are "even numbers" it could symbolize that they represent the Yin principle--one aspect of which equates to stability through serenity. O wants to have a child. She also wants the stability that the feminine principle implies--she is the earth mother. In a sense, she is complete as a circle is complete. I, however, is different and her vowel is phallic in nature. So she is the Yin that requires the sexual complement of Yang to release her energy--though this may result in instability. Her archetype is Eve or Helen the passionate lover.

Neither aspect of the Yin principle {relational stability and sexual dynamism}is satisfied by a society that puts its emphasis on total conformity rather than allowing the flexibility and independence of human interaction that the Yin/Yang Feminine/Masculine interaction requires.

Again. Just a wild guess.

Last edited by fantasyfan; 12-01-2012 at 06:51 PM.
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