Bias is an improper favor, support, or endorsement that extends to one person, group, or race, or even an argument against another. Although the bias exists primarily in the cultural context, it can infiltrate various other forms of academic life and literature, such as sexuality, gender, nation, religion, subjects, and life in general; in other words, it is an illogical and not neutral one-sided or one-sided support of a point of view in favor of the other side. It has been derived from the French word "biais" which means angle or inclination.
Types of bias
There are several types of biases. It exists even in non-literary texts. It could be propaganda, gender-related, age-related, racial discrimination, religious discrimination, marginalization and also stereotypes.
Examples of bias in the literature
Example # 1
Why if he fed, and yet within a month —
No let me think about that. Fragility, your name is a woman!
(Hamlet by William Shakespeare, Act I, Scene II)
Although they are spoken by Hamlet in the play, these lines show a partial attitude of Elizabeth's playwrights towards the female gender. Some critics have interpreted these lines as the misogynist attitude of Hamlet that he hates women, let alone his mother for her hasty marriage. He means that women are generally frail beings and have no self-control. Hence it is a gender bias demonstrated by Hamlet.
Example # 2
“The Jew was rubbing his hands; and he sat at the table and laughed at his friend's kindness. He was obviously very uncomfortable, however. “
(Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens)
This is an excerpt from Charles Dickens' famous novel Oliver Twist He introduced the character of Fagin the Jew. Here Sikes mocks him for his insolence to get between him and his dog. However, Fagin shows a very humble demeanor. The language used by Sikes clearly shows the stereotyping of Jews. It comprises veiled contempt and prejudice which is also a type of bias.
Example # 3
Have you lately been associating with a circle of pseudo-intellectual women, super spiritual higher beings, the Doctor asked with a smile? My wife has been telling me about them. "
" That is the problem, "interrupted Mr. Pontellier," she has not associated with anyone. She has left her Tuesdays at home, she has thrown out everyone she knows, and she is wandering alone, depressed on the trams, entering after dark. I tell you it is peculiar. I do not like; I feel a bit worried about that. "
(The awakening of Kate Chopin)
The doctor is clearly against women and assumes that modern women have impacted the mind of Mrs. Pontellier. Mr. Pontellier is describing how his wife, Edna Pontellier, has acted in a different way than a woman who has children and a husband should behave, yet the doctor's opinions reflect her gender bias. Leonce has also verified these comments from a doctor. that both men are biased against the only woman in history, Edna Pontellier.
Example # 4
Check this, Bassanio,
The devil can quote Scripture for his purpose. rotten apple in the heart
(The Merchant of Venice, Act I, Scene III by William Shakespeare)
Antonio, a character from the Merchant of Venice, says these words about Shylock, the Jew, and refers to him with great disdain. he terms to show that the Jew is an incarnation of evil. These lines are important as Antonio and Bassanio show prejudice against Shylock or the entire Jewish community. He is called an evil person because of his profession and as if he were on the side of the devil.
Example no. 5
snorting citizens with the bell,
Or otherwise the devil will make a grandfather of you.
Wake up, I say! and other senators turn against Othello. He calls him the "old black ram" which is a racist term. He uses a racist bow against Othello to make people hate him.
Bias Meaning and Function
Bias in literature is used to implicitly send a message to the reader about specific prejudices against a community, belief, sect or race. It is used to make people aware of certain shortcomings in people. It is also used to make people think differently than they usually do. Indeed, bias is used to create prejudices that lead to hatred and warmongering, also called "otherness" of people who are different from us.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw