Requestioning the Evil/ Good Woman’s Representation in Algerian Story-Telling: A Gender-Based Analysis

Fatma Zohra Mebtouche-Nedjai


Many story-tellings in Algerian oral culture, portrayed woman as a monster, (Frobenuis 1996), (Lacoste –Du-Jardin, 1991, 2005), a cruel stepmother (Mammeri, 1996) and (Bourayou, 2003) or as a clever creature, (Mammeri, 1996). This duality is interesting to analyze because it could bring into light that the evil is not inherent to the nature of woman but contingent upon the context, on the one hand. On the other, the female’s positive behavior could be perceived as a resisting and self-defense strategy against the ideology of the oppressor that could stand for the struggle of power between man and woman. The purpose of this paper aims at highlighting through a feminist approach how power relations between male and female are displayed in some Mammeri’s tale (1996)namely, La fille du charbonnier’ and Colombe Blanche and how the storying process transformation affects the actors’ actions to pinpoint the dynamics that shaped identity display. As far as the methodology is concerned, a multidisciplinary approach will be used: Propp’s model analysis to explore the functions of the characters, and Critical Discourse Analysis will be applied to deconstruct the different meanings of woman’s representation in Kabyle tales. The results reveal, among others, that woman’s power can exist only if it does not threat man’s power. Besides this, it may be used either against or for man’s empowerment.

DOI: 10.5901/mjss.2015.v6n4s2p478

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Mediterranean Journal of Social Sciences ISSN 2039-9340(Print) ISSN 2039-2117(Online)

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