Cecil vs. George on the Woman Question
Posted by Carolyn B on February 22, 1998 at 21:21:56:
In response to The cult of celibacy, written by Kay on February 22, 1998 at 19:00:38
] Without experience with a sister or close friend, Cecil may not have been able to relate to women, as Lucy comes to realize. Some men were just unfit for marriage.
I think that explains Cecil more than any leanings towards homosexuality. Cecil kept seeing Lucy as a beautiful object (a Leonardo) or a creature to be nurtured, trained and groomed like a show animal or a potted plant rather than as a human being. (Ch. 15 "The only relationship which Cecil conceived was feudal: that of protector and protected. He had no glimpse of the comradeship after which the girl's soul yearned.") For all Cecil's belief in his intellectual advancement, etc. he's still stuck back in the 19th century as far as the concept of male-female relationships are concerned.
George however sees Lucy as a partner. He's the one who really opens Lucy's eyes to Cecil's flaws. "You cannot live with Vyse. He's only for an acquaintance. He is for society and cultivated talk. He should know no one intimately, least of all a woman.. . . He daren't let a woman decide. He's the type who's kept Europe back for a thousand years." Interestingly George admits "I'm the same kind of brute at bottom" and goes on to say how men and women must fight this attitude together. (Hmm... I know some men who are still stuck in the Cecil mode and very few who would admit what George does ; )
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