Matching Items (128)

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An Exploration of the Design and Execution of Gender-Neutral Retail Products

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Two gender-neutral products developed and sold by IKEA were studied in order to learn about the development of such items, as well as what makes gender-neutral products appealing to consumers.

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Date Created
  • 2017-12

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Sexy Superheroes and Damsels in Distress: Sexism in Superhero Media

Description

Fifty years after the beginning of the modern feminist movement, there is still much to criticize when looking at female representations in all types of media through a feminist lens.

Fifty years after the beginning of the modern feminist movement, there is still much to criticize when looking at female representations in all types of media through a feminist lens. With the enormous popularity of the superhero genre in so many media \u2014 comic books, films, television, comic-cons \u2014 now is the time to ask: how much has the depiction of female superheroes changed? Due to the huge amount of superhero media, there is a wide range of depictions of female characters. Will new audiences be presented with empowering female protagonists or simply new variations on the same basic character types? This thesis will explore that question by, first, presenting an historical overview of superheroes in their various media. It then turns to the history of female superheroes, comparing them to their male counterparts to trace the ways in which they were presented as characters in their own right, or as merely appendages to the male characters. Some female superheroes represented a new type of female protagonist: powerful, independent, and committed to fighting justice. In others, the female superheroes were simply retreads of already existing perceptions and expectations of women. They were less powerful than their male counterparts, dependent and clingy, and fighters of injustice only because it made them better girlfriends, wives, or prospective wives. The thesis also looks at the visual depictions of women, who never seem to have fully broken away from the oldest dichotomy in Western culture: the virgin or whore. Female superheroes have, for the most part, been drawn as either demure, modest, girlish figures, or as highly sexualized, sometimes borderline pornographic, figures. After completing this historical overview, the thesis turns to an examination of what many have hailed as the most progressive contemporary depiction of the female superheroine: the recent television series Jessica Jones. For many fans, the character breaks important ground in the superhero genre. Jessica is a realistic, multi-dimensional character who channels strength by overcoming her PTSD and defeating her former abuser. She is not dependent on male characters, and her interactions with others show that she is a self-sufficient, compassionate person who can both control her own sexuality as well as pick up a minivan. While the character herself is not overtly feminist, her characteristics, interactions with others, and the story itself have feminist overtones. Jessica Jones shows us that it is possible to have a multi-dimensional, lead female protagonist in a superhero show.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-05

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'Not quite like you. A little like us': An Analysis of Physical, Social, and Psychological Constructions of Non-Binary Gender in Octavia Butler's Lilith's Brood

Description

This thesis examines how the physical construction of the ooloi Oankali aliens in Octavia Butler's trilogy Lilith's Brood enables the text to explore the limitations of a two-gender construct. It

This thesis examines how the physical construction of the ooloi Oankali aliens in Octavia Butler's trilogy Lilith's Brood enables the text to explore the limitations of a two-gender construct. It does so by positing the existence of other conscious organic life with a third gender outside the scope of Earth-bound organisms. The ooloi must be understood by a definition of gender that takes into consideration socially constructed and performed roles. The physical bodies of the ooloi have a "boundary-crossing" identity that is unambiguous. Their transformative and healing abilities, physical characteristics, and place in the social structure of the Oankali makes them the targets of disgust and hatred by humans who fear difference. This thesis analyzes how Butler uses the ooloi to demonstrate the possibility that humans living on a future Earth can supersede their innately destructive qualities.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2016-05

Bodies, Sex, & Identity (Discovering Your Sexual Self): Pleasure-Focused Sex Education for Preteens

Description

Bodies, Sex, & Identity: Discovering Your Sexual Self is a sex education book for children ages 10 and up. This creative project is a response to the significant issues with

Bodies, Sex, & Identity: Discovering Your Sexual Self is a sex education book for children ages 10 and up. This creative project is a response to the significant issues with modern sex education and the lack of resources for parents of preteens who want their children to receive accurate, inclusive, and socially responsible information about gender and sexuality. Bodies, Sex, & Identity is a pleasure-focused, sex-positive book, meant to supplement the information children receive about puberty and sex in school, on the Internet, and from other books and educational materials. The book features frequent references to sexual identity and urges its audience to reflect on how they experience their own bodies, gender, and sexuality. It contains discussion of power imbalances, stereotypes, and stigma, and it includes populations that are typically underrepresented or altogether excluded from sex education materials (specifically, intersex people, people of color, fat people, queer people, gender non-conforming people, disabled people, and asexual people). My purpose in creating Bodies, Sex, & Identity was to celebrate diversity, "fill in the gaps," and paint a more comprehensive, inclusive, and accurate picture of human sexuality.

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Date Created
  • 2018-05

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The Good, the Bad, and the Deadly: Gendered Moral Teachings in American Murder Ballads

Description

Once planted firmly in America, murder ballads old and new sparked the Southern imagination, and familiar motifs and formulas were sung with a distinct American twist. The moral standards and

Once planted firmly in America, murder ballads old and new sparked the Southern imagination, and familiar motifs and formulas were sung with a distinct American twist. The moral standards and beliefs of Christianity, specifically those of Baptist and Methodist denominations, are weaved through a majority of Southern murder ballads, which reflects the impact of the Second Great Awakening, a religious revival founded in the South during the 1790s and early 1800s. Murder ballads found in the American South from 1800 to 1950 follow a structure that reinforces southern expectations for men and women, emphasizing moral and immoral traits in a way that encourages the listener to adhere to strict gender roles. The question of who the villain is and who the victim is must be confronted while examining American murder ballads, because the answer is not as clear cut as one would assume. Virginal women and sinful women, hapless men and cold-blooded men, each play a role in these ballads and the way in which they are perceived shifts the moral weight of the song. Heterosexuality and gender norms are heavily enforced in murder ballads from the South, and any deviations from these norms leads to murder, execution, or eternal damnation.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

Obscenity: The Quick and Dirty

Description

Zines have made space for queer, intersectional feminists to bring together academic and artistic knowledge in order to produce a message and inspire readers. In order to criticize the legal

Zines have made space for queer, intersectional feminists to bring together academic and artistic knowledge in order to produce a message and inspire readers. In order to criticize the legal definition and practical execution of obscenity in the US, a visual component was a necessity. The use of a Zine allowed for a critical and humorous exploration of obscenity in US law and media. The Zine provides a visual analysis while the companion essay provides a critique of the zine and additional analysis. The Zine brings awareness to ways in which the legal historical objectification of black and native bodies contributed to the creation of modern obscenity laws. These laws are based on racist and sexist ideals of morality and create inherently flawed definitions of obscenity through personal bias. The flaws within the laws allow for exceptions in the legal definition of obscenity which normalizes the commodification of women's bodies. These laws and the exceptions present contribute to the dehumanization of and violence towards women as usefulness is deemed the most important factor when considering the use of women’s bodies in potentially obscene images and films.

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Date Created
  • 2020-05

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The Queer New Woman Portrait

Description

Shifting gender roles and deviations from societal norms are exemplified in portraits created by queer women artists active during the early twentieth century. A transformative period for women, the beginning

Shifting gender roles and deviations from societal norms are exemplified in portraits created by queer women artists active during the early twentieth century. A transformative period for women, the beginning of the twentieth century brought the concept of the New Woman to the fore and provided opportunities for independence and self-expression for women. The New Woman is a term from the late nineteenth century, referring to women who were less interested in marriage and raising families and more interested in access to jobs and education. Through self-portraits and portraits of women in their circles, artists represented gender expression including androgyny and performative cross-dressing as declarations of queer women’s identity. This thesis focuses on works by the painters Romaine Brooks, Gluck, Florine Stettheimer, and photographers Berenice Abbott, Alice Austen, Marie Høeg and Bolette Berg. The artists socialized in queer circles and fostered new styles and forms of gender representation. In my study I explore how each artist approached her portraits, what each was trying to convey, and how their work aligns or diverges from the queer New Woman ideal. Their identities and shared experiences, both as queer women and artists, shaped their practice.
In addition, the artists’ sexualities are reflected in their pieces through their representation of their bodies. Often, this requires the interpretation of subtle visual clues and crucial images of androgyny, cross-dressing, and the dandy aesthetic. Queer artists often embraced clothing and accessories to express their identity and signal to others adept at recognizing such identifiers that they are queer. The painter Gluck exemplifies how androgynous clothing can be used as a statement of her sexuality in self-portraits as visual signifiers to those in queer circles. Through salons held in their homes, or a hidden back room of their studio in the case of Marie Høeg and Bolette Berg, artists created communities to inspire each other’s achievements and unique styles. In this paper I intend to shed light on how the portraits I am explicating are declarations of queerness, and how they present the artists’ deviations from gender norms to the art world and broader society.

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Date Created
  • 2020-05

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A Modern Myth of Perfection: The Pygmalion Story in Contemporary Film and Culture

Description

This thesis examines contemporary cinematic adaptations of the Ovidian Pygmalion story. The films Blade Runner (1981), Lars and the Real Girl (2007), Ruby Sparks (2012), and Her (2013) are analyzed.

This thesis examines contemporary cinematic adaptations of the Ovidian Pygmalion story. The films Blade Runner (1981), Lars and the Real Girl (2007), Ruby Sparks (2012), and Her (2013) are analyzed. This thesis seeks to understand why this particular myth is so resonant in today's popular culture and what this relevance reveals about modern society. The roles of female subjugation, sexualization, and relationship with technology will be major areas of concern. Research includes film criticism, Ovidian scholarship, and new advances in computer technology.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Infantalization, Anti-Feminism, and The Female Sexuality of Vivisection in Wilkie Collins's Heart and Science by Mariah Merriam

Description

In Wilkie Collins’s Heart and Science, gender is handled very carefully and intentionally. The women within this novel are characterized into two categories: sexually inexperienced and intellectually provocative. Women in

In Wilkie Collins’s Heart and Science, gender is handled very carefully and intentionally. The women within this novel are characterized into two categories: sexually inexperienced and intellectually provocative. Women in the novel that represent the ideal English woman, such as Carmina, are presented as sexually inexperienced and full of compassion for animals. The ideal woman was child-like in her sexual inexperience and naivety towards topics easily understood by men. Meanwhile, women who represented the New Woman, such as Mrs. Gallilee, are presented as intellectually provocative and cruel. The New Woman was a woman who did not conform to societal expectations of women in the 19th century, and Collins’s interpretation of the New Woman as void of compassion reflects the public tensions against the insertion of women into male-dominated fields during the Women’s Rights Movement. This strain is integral to understanding the insurmountable pressures placed upon Victorian women in a society, such that society would dissect her choices and presentation regardless of which category she fell in.<br/><br/> Both the ideal woman and the New Woman in Wilkie Collins’s “Heart and Science” are repeatedly compared to children and animals, exposing the degraded stance of women within nineteenth-century society. Women were viewed as having lesser intellectual and emotional capabilities than their male counterparts, resulting in the association of women with other “lesser” beings. Collins’s negative portrayal of the New Woman and the pedophilic sexualization of the ideal woman represent how the Victorian woman was “vivisected” by patriarchal society. The meticulous and nonconsensual dissection of a woman’s entire being, from her sexuality to her intellectual capacity, resulted in women identifying with vivisected animals and thus resulted in a strong feminine presence in the Anti-Vivisection Movement. <br/><br/>The connection between women, the Anti-Vivisection Movement, and female sexuality provides context for the success of the Women’s Rights Movement. Victorian women stood against vivisection because they understood what it was like to have their bodies be used without their consent, and they understood the battle between men’s desires and women’s rights to their bodies. Women also identified with being picked apart by society, as a woman’s worth lay in her physical appearance and her sexual and intellectual reputation. Through the Anti-Vivisection Movement’s success, women realized that they could insert themselves into scientific conversation and succeeding at helping those who are voiceless. The traction from the Anti-Vivisection Movement carried into the fervor for the Women’s Rights Movement, because women stood together in a way that had never been done before and rejected all preconceived notions of their status in society.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2021-05

The Hierarchy of Validity: A Creative Exploration of Reproductive Justice in Cross-Disciplinary Birthwork

Description

Birthing is an intimate experience and all mothers—regardless of their race or class—deserve to have a variety of birthworker options. Birthwork covers an array of professions related to meeting the

Birthing is an intimate experience and all mothers—regardless of their race or class—deserve to have a variety of birthworker options. Birthwork covers an array of professions related to meeting the physical and emotional needs of expectant mothers and mothers in post-partum. For the purposes of my research, however, I define birthworkers as those working as a doula, midwife, or OBGYN. Without the knowledge of the multiplicity of options available to them, pregnant women of color’s autonomy suffers.<br/><br/>This project explores how birthworkers in Arizona are differentially perceived and hierarchized by expectant mothers. While doulas are assumed to be mystical, OBGYNs professional and midwives a blend of both levels of professionality, this project explores the hierarchy of validity and importance of acknowledging each birthworking discipline as beneficial to expectant and post-partum mothers.<br/><br/>Through the presentation of this work, I aim to educate readers on the benefits of each birthworking discipline, thereby raising awareness about the need for equal respect and access to all types of care providers during the pregnancy journey, as well as a need to place intimacy at the center of birthworking praxis. Throughout this ‘zine you will learn about the importance of integrating terms such as “reproductive justice” and “equity” into general discourse, the racial disparity evident in the quality of care pregnant people receive during delivery of their child, as well as anecdotal information about each birthworking sector—doulaship, midwifery, and obstetrics—from professionals in each field.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2021-05