Examining the structure and style of Betty Rollin's essay "Motherhood.

Essay by stef16lyCollege, UndergraduateA-, November 2003

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In the essay "Motherhood: Who Needs It?" Betty Rollins does not use the most effective structure and style to argue against what she believes is the "motherhood myth" (203). Rollins opposes the idea that having children is something that all women should want, and need to do instinctively. She feels that women are having babies for all the wrong reasons, and attempts to set a few things straight about motherhood itself. Though her argument may be passionate, the organization, diction, and overall tone of the essay do not seem to be the most efficient for her cause.

Rollin uses a very ineffectual style for this particular essay. She addresses what seems to be a serious issue to her, in a rather informal, unserious way. She begins the second paragraph with the statement, "The notion that the maternal wish and the activity of mothering are instinctive or biologically predestined is baloney" (203).

This develops a contradictory feel to the piece. Rollin uses the word "baloney", and other slang, which gives the essay a more comical sarcastic atmosphere. This informal diction confuses the reader. Her tone is also very sarcastic and rude, creating a rather hostile environment. Littering the facts she is trying to get across with sarcastic comments pulls the reader away from the actual information. In doing so, Rollin weakens her argument dramatically.

The organization of "Motherhood: Who needs It?" is also lacking. Rollin jumps constantly from one point to the next making it hard for the reader to keep up. She does not focus on an individual argument without interrupting it in some way, sometimes with witty remarks, or even excessive quotes. Her support becomes very redundant, and it is easy to get lost in all of the repetitive details, losing sight of the actual argument. Rollin is...