Gender Stereotypes : The Teen Makeover Movie Essay

1679 Words Nov 14th, 2016 7 Pages
Traditionally, femininity is associated with a particular set of personality traits and behaviours, which are deemed acceptable for women to perform by the most influential institutions of the dominant culture. The teen makeover movie is a visual medium that reinforces these expectations through the types of female characters they present. Gender stereotypes reveal a distinct correlation between performances of idealized femininity and the distribution of female power in their high school community. Heathers (1988), Clueless (1995), and Mean Girls (2004), despite having been released decades apart from one another, use similar makeover tropes to reveal trends in the use of makeover transformation that demonstrate how idealized vision of femininity is reproduced in the makeover film in order allow its female characters to attain popularity, the ability to seize power from those who fail to conform, and the attention/approval of the opposite sex. The Bitch draws power from the image of femininity that she cultivates and performs. She is the female character who reigns supreme over all others; she is constructed as the most powerful female character in the hierarchy due to her stellar performance of idealized traditional femininity. After infiltrating her ranks, the transformed female immediately begins to use her newly found access to power through her own convincing performance of traditional femininity in order to overthrow the former order. In this way, each of these films…

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