Women in Proverbs: A Comparative Study in French and Sinhala
H. S. M. M. Jayawardena

Women are a subject on which a number of proverbs are found in various languages. The present study examines the representation of women in two cultures. Most proverbs in Sinhala and French languages focus on traditional roles such as the mother, or the daughter. Certain characteristics such as beauty, chastity and intelligence or the lack of them are highlighted and often criticized. A feature that stands out in both languages is the comparison of the woman with men, species of animals and other objects. These objects or animals used in comparisons differ in the two languages. Cultural elements add uniqueness to proverbs even when the moral expressed remain the same. It is clearly seen in Sinhala and French proverbs that the traditional wisdom scrutinizes every aspect of a woman’s life and the sexist view of the patriarchy continues to humiliate the woman.

Full Text: PDF      DOI: 10.15640/ijll.v3n2a11