Shirley And Rita Essay, Research Paper
“Rita wins, Shirley loses”
I consider this statement to be untrue. I believe Shirley and Rita both win in their own way. Both women get the main objective they were directing towards. Rita gets her education and Shirley gets the ‘former Shirley Valentine’ that was longing to get out. Her hope and self-confidence badly shattered by marriage and life.
Shirley Valentine is a witty, British look at one woman’s triumph over traditional gender roles, boredom, and the empty nest. She is offered a way out, a holiday and after many hums and hahs, Shirley seizes the opportunity and goes to Greece, a world far away from her troubles. There, she sees a new life for herself, one that she would rather than back home in a lost marriage. Shirley brakes out of the mould set for her by society. She plays Joe for a fool well and in the end, gets him right where she wants him-him wanting her back, not just for his selfishness, but from a prompt from his son. Shirley needs him and he needs Shirley, just like it was in the beginning.
Rita on the other hand wants to break out of her role as a working class no body she believes other people see her as. The two women’s stories are similar, probably because Willy Russell had this experience in his life. Rita wants to be educated so others wont look down on her and so that she can have the choice of what she does with her life. Either it be children, a higher job, etc.
I feel that Shirley wasn’t content at the end. The story leaves you guessing, what is going to happen next after Joe takes his son’s advice and tracks down his wife? Will a foreign land make Shirley and Joe rekindle their relationship?
Will Shirley move back with Joe and become what she previously was, go back to Shirley Bradshaw and not the young, vibrant Shirley Valentine she so
desperately craved for and now is again? I wish it ended with a good, happy, solid ending, but not all tales end up happy-well not for everyone.
Rita felt that at the end she had want she wanted, but secretly I don t think she liked the fact that Frank was going off to Australia. I have a feeling she knew about his feelings for her, but she never said anything-maybe because she thought it was wrong (because of the teacher-student relationship thing) or maybe she just didn’t have feelings for him. He felt that he had had enough of being a lecturer and wanted a change, after all that he had been through with Rita and his secret love for her that he did nothing about. But, I guess he wanted it that way.
So, in the end Rita and Shirley win for themselves. Not for anyone else, just them. Their goals were to get out of their stereotypes society and life set for them. To prove they are better than what people think, they can be what they believe and no one can tell them other wise. They are their own person.