“Tony Kytes, the Arch Deceiver” and “Seeing a Beauty Queen Home”

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Although both of the stories I have studied had the same message about womanising the era’s in which they were written changed the endings. The pre-twentieth text story was written by Thomas Hardy in 1850’s and was called “Tony Kytes, The Arch Deceiver”. When women were very much dominated by men and marriage was thrived upon by society. The era in which it was written is shown in the story by objects such as: horses and carriages and maidens. The story is written in old complex English using adjectives and descriptive texts.

In comparison to the twentieth century text which is much simpler and modern, using slang and less descriptive and unfamiliar words? The second story I studied was written in 1950’s by Bill Naughton and was titles “Seeing a Beauty Queen Home”. As shown in the text during the era when this book was written women were beginning to become as dominant, marriage was seen as less important, also men and women met and acted in different ways as shown by the quote “There was one wench… lend us your body baby”. Showing they were more open and equal. The sexes are expressed very differently in both stories.

Tony Kytes and Rudy were the male characters, and shown to behave in similar ways. However, due to the era change they also have their differences. Tony Kytes seems to feel he is in control at all times however much trouble he is in. Humour is derived from his attempts at courtship with all three women he is using “O the Petticoats Went Off and the Breeches They went on”. During the course of one day he accepts and rejects three women, finally settling on the only which will have him. Tony Kyte unintentionally makes himself look weak due to his pathetic action of making his mind up and eventually asks his father.

Which he rejects showing his naive and child like reactions to situations and how much he is easily persuaded by girls. This is shown by his unwillingness to say ‘no’ and agrees to ride home for them all. Tony Kytes seems to reassemble a child in a sweet shop and is only more concerned with him, rather than how upset Milly would be due to his disloyalty. “He would have kissed them all round”, he feels they will forgive him anyway and lacks understanding that he can’t still use them. Tony Kyte is more of a fool than anything and eventually gets the marriage he wants but only because of society’s male dominance.

Although Tony Kytes is a womaniser, Rudy from the most recent story uses women in a totally different way. From the start of the story text such as; “Naturally the dames were all after me”. Rudy expresses his confidence and nasty character, he believes he is a gift to women and just like Tony Kytes comes over humorous due to his action, Rudy is very aware of his place in society and is known well at the disco which may be why he is so confident, however he becomes less confidant when his surroundings become unfamiliar.

Rudy treats women with disrespect and uses negative language to describe them such as before he found out Maggie was a beauty queen he called her a ‘griffin’ and a ‘wench’. He uses women for sex not marriage proving the time change, and will only go out of his way if it is worth his while, just as he did with Maggie where he paid a tram journey and missed the last tram home as a bargain for sex and sympathy off her, and uses her as a trophy keeping Maggie feeling special whilst he had no feelings foe her.

When Rudy travels to Maggie’s grandma’s and is in an all female environment he becomes adjetated due to her newly found dominant behaviour, causing a change in power. In both stories despite time differences, the men seem similar where as the women’s characters are very different, which will indicate a change in women’s roles and positions. Before the industrial revolution, men and women worked together in or around the home. Men were considered head of the household and society was male dominated. During factory production the pattern begin to change as women tries to prove themselves and fought to become equal.

This change is shown in both stories especially in the most modern story between Maggie’s character in contrast with her grandma. The women Tony Kyte was using were named Hannah, Unity and Milly and showed in their characters this male dominance especially Milly. Unity uses tone and comparing language, including leading questions to remind Tony of their past relationships. She is bold and quite confident as shown when she makes him look at her and say she is pretty.

Hannah is as bold and knows deep down Tony would choose her over any other, “Tony do you like her better than me? This asks him to re-evaluate his other relationships. She also uses body language and a soothing tone to get what she wants. In contrast to Unity and Hannah, Milly is the one most male dominant. She is small, nice and tender which shows the stereotypical Victorian women because of the corsets they used to wear. It is clear he is not interested as shown by their bland conversation about the weather and other pointless things. However, she soon reveals her true raging side once confronted by Unity. All the women have similar motives in their fight for Tony, they crate the sexual tension.

They also think the marriage that he offers to them because it is the only option to leave their Victorian fathers and is their only means of escape. This is shown after they turn his offer down and really regret their answers. Whereas Milly does it out of shame, that she would be a social outcast. In contrast Maggie is the more modern girl, and changes to suit her no society and men. She is a normal girl at the beginning of the story but as Rudy dances with her, she is given back her real status of a ‘beauty queen’ adding to her attraction.

She is presented as large, down to earth and powerful as shown when they flirt by her punching him in the arm. She shows a great level of power when at her grandma’s house, whereas her grandma is still under male dominance like she was brought up shown when she regards Rudy’s lies as the truth; “How’s Your Leg? ” Whereas she questions Maggie’s answers all the way through the story she drove Rudy on such as when she let him in the house and put the key in mouth to stop it making a noise, this action suggests she has done it before showing an element of control.

Therefore the sexes show different characteristics in either story. In conclusion the roles of women have changed considerably during the tome era’s I studied. The roles Maggie played with her dominance and confidence in male company was a great contrast compared to Milly who was greatly dominated by Tony and wanted marriage only to escape her male headed household. Therefore the relationships between sexes at the times the stories “Tony Kytes, The Arch Deceiver” and “Seeing a Beauty Queen Home” were written depends greatly upon societies views, family life and time era.

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