The “Speech of Miss Polly Baker”


In the “Speech of Miss Polly Baker”, Benjamin Franklin conveys an “unusually progressive views” of woman during his time period. The character of Polly Baker was portrays as a filthy and indecent woman for several reasons. One of the reasons was that her marital status still labeled as single. In addition, another reason was that she has a bastard child.

Despite that, from my perspective she was rather a strong-willed heroine that influences others. In also she has the ability to persuade a judge to marry her. It was something that an ordinary woman would and could have never done in the first place. On the other hand, Polly Baker delivers a very powerful speech that remains debatable whether or not it was her fault to trust the wrong man and to give birth to his child. In other words, is it sin to have a child born out of wedlock? As a woman, I agreed with her that this prosecution was unfair and unequal to her. Her reputation was already ruined. Not to mention, that the punishment of having to endure through those hardships are enough for a single mother like her.

Hence, Benjamin Franklin provides his readers the better comprehension of women’s behavior and their social status in the male-dominated society.


~ by huangkell on May 23, 2013.

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