Top Girls: Win and Nell - Year 12/13 IB English Lang-Lit

Top Girls: Win and Nell
pg 46-52
By Katrina and Katherine
Top Girls management agency → 1980’s → seeing a change in gender
equality → rising number of women taking on authoritative positions →
Marlene given the position of managing director
early part of the play talks about different women in history who suffered
under the patriarchal society and expectations → shows how far gender
equality has come and evolved → comparison of their struggle
however women are still victims of gender discrimination, have to
overcome a lot, particularly working women who may face belittlement at
Looks at the life of Marlene, a fine example of an independent career
woman seeking success
Both Nell and Win represent the rising number
of independent, headstrong and able career
women in the 1980’s
Both share an indifference towards
● Constantly talks about her lovers rose garden, but never
talks about the man himself → more attracted to what
he has than the emotional/physical connection
● Has a married lover, regards the relationship as
something “fun” → would have no misgivings about
abandoning the relationship
○ “The minute its not secret I’m out on my ear” pg 51
● Refers to herself and Nell as “tough birds” → knows
that they’re doing very well
an independent and high achieving career woman → places career over marriage
If I were to play house, I would play house ace
I could go on working and not marry him
same tier in terms of ability and intelligence as Marlene, but much to her disdain, is
not picked for the managing director → marlene chosen instead
“Oh yes. Aces”
despite this she’s still glad Marlene was chosen over Howard, a male employee →
believes in women’s rights→ compares the traits of women in a stereotypical male
way to emphasise her point in female dominance
“Our Marlene’s got far more balls than Howard and that’s that.”
however understands and adheres to societal conventions → when scouting for
potential employees they place emphasis on first impressions and physical
“If you’ve any really pretty bastards, Marlene, I want some for Prestel.
“Good looker?”
Use of Language
Similarly to the opening scene, the 2 characters also interrupt each other at points
Pg. 46, 47
Gossiping → typical behavior associated with females, however they are really
straight to the point → short, succinct responses → they don’t like to dawdle,
reflects their personalities
They speak like men, use of profanities → so they can thrive in the male dominated
world of business
“Fuck that for a joke” - Nell, pg 51
When they talk about men they’re slightly condescending
“He’s not overbright” pg 48
“Poor little nerd” pg 48
Talk about “playing house” pg 50 → the idea of being tied down to home doesn’t
appeal to them → they treat domesticity as a joke, would cause setbacks to their