Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Classic Female Literary Characters

I tried to do this quiz just now: Quiz - Which Classic Female Literary Character Are you?

I really wanted to do it. Dr. B. did it; so did some other smart bloggers. It looked funny and cute. I was hoping for Elizabeth Bennet, but a little afraid I'd get Dorothea Brooke. Still, Dorothea has many good qualities. It was worth a try.

But I just couldn't do it.

Partly, it was pedantry. Question number one asked me to choose an adjective to describe myself, and the choices included "independant." Umm, no.

But then it went on. Question two, for example, asked: What are your views on love? The answers were:
Love? Bah humbug.
Love can make your life miserable.
I'm too young to think about such things.
Love...I find it ridiculous.
I LOVE love! It's so...romantic!
I'm not here to deal with love, though I'd like it someday.
There's no one good enough for me to love.
I'm incapable of love.
Sometimes I get carried away with love...

Can I choose "none of the above"?

Apparently not. The questions went on, with marriage clearly in the future, and money or love questions predominating. I tried to go through and see if I could get it to tell me I am Alice*, from Alice in Wonderland. I got Beth March instead. Whoops! (I did describe myself as "assertive," which I would have thought would disqualify me for Beth...)

And then it dawned on me. (OK, with help from Becca.) I can't be a classic female literary character. I'm too old, too married, too much a mother. Being a heroine is, then, right out.

Whew! What a relief. But what if the quiz were "which famous literary mother are you"? Would I be Elizabeth Bennet's mother? (Perish the thought.) Snow White's lovely stepmother? Let's see, we could add The Giving Tree (mother figure), maybe the Debra Winger character from Terms of Endearment (yes, it was a novel first), Charlotte Haze from Lolita, someone from Philip Roth... Could I even come up with enough options?

Don't answer that. I think I'll give up online quizzes for a while.

*Actually, Alice isn't an option. There are three Austen heroines (Emma, Elizabeth Bennet, and Marianne Dashwood), two Brontes (Jane Eyre and Catherine Earnshaw), and Beth March, Scarlett O'Hara, Anna Karenina, and Estella from Great Expectations.

1 comment:

Lilian said...

I felt the very same way about this quiz, I just couldn't stomach the questions (and this apart from the mispelled words). I end up feeling this way about any and every quiz I see... oh well. Sometimes I avoid them (and even interesting memes) because I feel like I do have real stuff to say and I don't care to be made to appear to be something I'm not...