Essay on Gender Constructions : The Wasp Factory

1007 Words Feb 11th, 2016 null Page
Similarly, The Wasp Factory also uses masculinity to explore gender constructions, although arguably more subversively than Beloved. This is firstly due to it being written after the 1970s feminist literary criticism movement, which means Banks ' remote setting which he 'envisaged as a planet ' allows him to transgress these constructions using grim satire. This is evident in Frank 's inability to satisfy his sexual desires due to his lack of male genitalia, which means also that he does not consider himself a 'full man ' . The modifier 'full ' is significant here as it implies reproduction is essential for masculinity, however it is also ironic as the reader later finds out that Frank is still 'capable of intercourse ' , but as a female. This similar to the gender constructions presented in Beloved as both novels show how sex and reproduction link in with the idea of masculinity and typical male gender construction, but Banks ' transgression and irony here questions rather than conforms to these constructs. However, The Wasp Factory also presents the idea that masculinity doesn 't necessarily have to revolve around sexual gratification, as Frank also refers to himself as an 'honorary man ' , when he says that 'Both sexes can do one thing especially well; women can give birth and men can kill ' . This violent stereotype is reinforced through Frank 's three murders, the killing of animals and the sadistic torture of wasps, demonstrated in his 'wasp factory ' In…

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