During the time period of Anne Bradstreet, women were not considered very intelligent. They did not have a high role in society, and were often regarded with low respects. Most women would go with the flow and not think twice about changing the boundaries made. However, Anne Bradstreet’s personality leads her to separate from these societal thoughts, which is reflected in her poetry and stories. She was a mostly Puritan writer. The Puritan belief is based on virtues of hard work, discipline and living your life according to God.
Many poems center in on her fight to accept the difficulty of the Puritan people. She praises God often in her work, but also voices her own view on things. She is also a feminist because she sticks up for women and their capabilities. These things make her not the typical Puritan writer of the time period. Bradstreet’s writing is not what I had expected to read coming from a “Puritan” in the 1600’s because of the feminism, her inner emotions, and her outspoken views.
She was bothered by the thought that a woman’s place was only in their home nurturing her family and husband’s needs.
Bradstreet shows her fury by proclaiming, “I am obnoxious to each carping tongue who says my hand a needle better fits…” (Ln 25-26) She obviously is not okay with the idea of women being second hand to men when they are just as equal. Other authors and the public criticized her writing thoroughly because it was from a woman.
She is without a doubt a feminist, as any woman who wrote in this time. Another example of her being outspoken and unexpected is the fact that she wrote about her love for her husband.
Most writers were men and to have a woman even writing poems of their own was brave, but she took it further and chose to speak openly about her relationship. She describes how she feels to her husband, “If ever two were one, then surely we. If ever man were loved by wife, then thee; if ever wife was happy in a man, Compare with me ye women if you can. ” (Bradstreet Ln 1-4) This perspective of writing had not been previously done and it opened a new window of opportunity for women. Anne Bradstreet differs from traditional Puritan writings by making poetry for enjoyment and self-expression rather than preaching about God.
Bradstreet is not unconventional in that she disagreed from some accepted beliefs, but lived in a religious, male ruled culture that put many restrictions on women and their roles. Her Puritan belief shows more in the Burning of Our House with Bradstreet saying “ That laid all my goods now in the dust. Yea, so it was, and so twas just. It was His own, it was not mine…” (Ln 15-17) This showed that she cares little about what she physically has because it is all a blessing from God anyway.
It let her explain her beliefs without objection to authority. Though Anne Bradstreet’s poetry has some controversial elements for this time, the content also includes natural feelings and religious devotion so fitting with Puritan belief. Her simple style and extensive variety of topics makes her a popular poet today and easily understood. Anne Bradstreet is an inventive writer who shows where her private life meets her religious life. She has taken me by surprise with the poems that I have read because of her courage to speak about what she wants. She is a person that all women can look up to when they think that they can’t do something.