Essentialist And Non Essentialist Views

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Essentialist and Non-Essentialist Views represented in the Television Series Glee
The American Television Series Glee, directed by Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, and Ian Brennan, can be interpreted as representing its characters in both an essentialist and non-essentialist way. (Colfer, Lynch and McHale 2014)
Individually, the characters are constructed in a way that conforms to social stereotypes, however the overall idea of the series represents non-essentialist views. The characters are represented in such a stereotypical way to portray the show as a satire. Glee includes characters that belong to both racial, social and gender stereotypes, such as ‘dumb blondes,’ ‘fashion obsessed homosexual men,’ ‘smart Asians’ and ‘sassy African American women.’ (WhatCulture! 2014)
This essay will analyse the construction of the characters in Glee in relation to essentialism and non-essentialism.

Asian stereotypes are shown through the characters Mike Chang and Tina Cohen-Chang. Mike and Tina are represented as stereotypical Asians in how they both have the same last name, enforcing the essentialist ideology that all Asians are the same and have the same last name. They also are constructed to fit the stereotype of ‘Smart Asians.’ In the third episode of season 3, entitled ‘Asian F,’ Mike says to Tina “I got an A-,” to which Tina replies, “You got an Asian F?” (Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, and Ian Brennan 2011) This endorses the idea that all Asians are smart. An A minus is considered a
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