APL: U2: “Values” Discussion Post (F) (25 min.)

The short story “You’re Ugly, Too” by Lorrie Moore takes place in the American Midwest talking about the social norms that women are defined in society. We see the protagonist, Zoe, gives off a weird impression to the reader from the way she acts and talks to others. Zoe has been teaching American History at a University and with her attitudes and immoral values, her lessons and the way she talks to her students refuse the true acts of how to be a respectable woman. There is also a place where women in society are supposed to be dressed in a certain way. Her values attack this view that everyone needs to be like “Heidi.” “You were never to say you weren’t fine thank you and yourself. You were supposed to be Heidi. You were supposed to lug goat milk up the hills and not think twice.” (192) Her passive voice and tone fault Zoe into becoming this so-called “Heidi” in not only the way she speaks but the way she looks too. “But soon she came to realize that all men, deep down, wanted Heidi. Heidi with cleavage. Heidi with outfits.” (193) Men’s lack of interest in her takes Zoe’s beauty away from her since she doesn’t dress a certain way. Her sister, Evan, has got a perfect lifestyle in her wealth and her upcoming marriage. She invites Zoe to one of her party’s, and it seems that with her unamused interest in the men she has been with, she gave no respect when she was paired with Earl. Her extended sarcasm and irony in her dialog portrayed a message that society had only one view about how women are being portrayed, and if they weren’t following these norms, men’s power can ostracize women’s moral values.

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