Study Guide

Women Dissatisfaction

By Louise Bogan

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Let's rate "Women" on a scale of dissatisfaction. How satisfied is our speaker with the way women live their lives? Would you say "mildly dissatisfied," "highly dissatisfied," or "grab women by their dress sleeves and shake them like a dry martini until they wake up and break their oppressive shackles"? Yeah, we'd pick C too. On first read, it might look like the poem is nothing more than a list of things that women are no good at. But it seems like our speaker is trying to spread her dissatisfaction around here. Why should she be the only one with an axe to grind? Shouldn't women notice some truth in these accusations and take immediate steps to change their lives?

Questions About Dissatisfaction

  1. We know how the speaker feels, but how does the poem depict women's attitudes toward their own lives?
  2. What does the poem reveal about men's attitudes toward women?
  3. Is there anything that our speaker might be pleased about in this poem? How do you know?
  4. Is dissatisfaction necessary for any real change to take place? How might the speaker answer this question?

Chew on This

Dissatisfaction is necessary for change to take place.

Dissatisfaction and complacency can actually be two peas in a pod.

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