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Tale of Two Cities

  • Date Submitted: 09/15/2013 06:21 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 65.8 
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Prompt: Analyze how Madame Defarge and Lucie Manette are strong women in A Tale of Two Cities. Reflect on the archetypes that describe them.

            Strong Women in a Tale of Two Cities
In "A Tale of Two Cities", Charles Dickens portrays two strong women (Lucie Manette, Madame Defarge) characters in his work. Although the common thread between these women is their strength, this trait is derived differently for each character. So are the archetypes for these women as well.
Lucie Manette’s strength is derived from compassion. She was portrayed by Charles Dickens as the epitomic, perfect woman, "a pretty figure, a quantity of golden hair," with "a pair of blue eyes." In addition, Lucie was delineated as polite, loyal, timid, and loving. For example, Lucie's love was the only thing that kept Dr. Manette from reverting back to his former miserable self back from the brink of insanity after his unjust imprisonment. “Only his daughter had the power of charming this black brooding from his mind. She was the golden thread that united him to a past beyond his misery, and to a Present beyond his misery: and the sound of her voice, the light of her face, the touch of her hand, had a strong beneficial influence on him always (Dickens, 77).” Lucie evokes a deep love from those around her, including her father, Charles Darnay (who eventually marries her), Mr. Stryver, Miss Pross, and, perhaps most of all, Sydney Carton. Lucie is seen as the nurturer archetype in the story. She has very compassionate and innocent actions. "No, Mr. Carton. I am sure that the best part of it might still be; I am sure that you might be much, much worthier of yourself" (Dickens, 145). She helps Sydney Carton in the story to believe in himself and try to make him a better person, because she can see the good in him.
Madame defarge is a strong woman, she is a great example of how there is prodigious strength in sorrow and despair. Madame Defarge’s pain was her strength. The loss of her...


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