The status of women in nineteenth century British society in the novels of Charlotte Bronte / Somporn Boonyabancha = สถานภาพสตรีในสังคมอังกฤษในสมัยคริสต์ศตวรรษที่ 19 ในนวนิยายของชาร์ลอต บรองเต / สมพร บุญญะบัญชา
This thesis aims to argue that while women in the nineteenth century are conditioned to be dependants on males and conform to their expectations, in fact, they have the potential to be empowered so as to live more independently and to have greater control over their lives. The rigid demarcation of gender roles and spheres, the paradigm of male dominance and female submissiveness and female needs, aspirations and quests, all of which are emphasized in Bronte’s novels are explored. It is found that women are regarded as inferior and subordinate to males and are hence confined in their traditional roles as mothers and wives within the domestic sphere. Such social restraints critically deprive women of necessary resources for income earning and bar them from developing and asserting themselves more fully. Being thus conditioned, women subjugate themselves to men from whom they expect love and protection. These conditions are inclined to make women suffer in frustration at being powerless and extremely limited in the choices available to them. เท presenting these, the novels point out that women have the potential as well as aspirations to be exposed to a greater variety of experiences and to engage themselves in a more significant manner. The novels, ultimately, point to the need for women to be empowered more substantially and to be recognized more as individuals in such a way so as tc be able to be accorded with the dignity they deserve.