Femininity And Conformity

Decent Essays

Conceptions of idealized and appropriate feminine qualities are majorly constructed by the dominant patriarchal discourse that judges female behaviour with reference to gender-based social norms. Incarcerated within the patriarchal disciplinary system, the female bodily act becomes a subject of highly structured regulations whose “inspecting gaze” forces it to be infantilised or penalised. Living under the custody of their offenders, women are the target of a manipulative process that strives to condition them, training them to believe in its established qualities of femininity. Through a systematic surveillance of their behaviours and thoughts, the oppressive controlling system turn women into “docile bodies” which are emblematic of conformity and submissiveness. “[L]argely interpellated by …show more content…

Deviation from the normative inflicts her with the label of a monster and thus relegates her to a liminal space. Becker maintains that her misconduct which “resist[s] le propre in terms of femininity” (172) brings devastation to the hegemonic discourse, unveiling its laden ideological practices. Janet’s transgressive and ‘masculine’ behaviours in Joanna Russ’s The Female Man (1975) define her as a she-monster who challenges gender expectations. Her cross-dressing, profane language and violent demeanour make her define herself as ‘male

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