Feminist Analysis Of Legally Blonde

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The 2001 comedy film Legally Blonde tells the story of Elle Woods, an upbeat and optimistic sorority girl who, over the course of the movie, transitions from a simple college student with few professional aspirations into a successful law student. Elle initially presents herself as a stereotypical sorority girl: vain, superficial, and self-obsessed. As such, she consistently faces discrimination from her friends, family, and colleagues alike. The film wants the audience to view Elle as a woman who rises up above the stereotype through hard work and intelligence, and who proves herself as a capable individual in a discriminatory society. Because of this, some view Elle as a feminist icon, a person who empowers women to achieve equality to…show more content…
Rather than a woman fighting for a lifelong dream, we see an emotional woman going through a rough break-up and dealing with it through drastic measures. This discrepancy completely disparages the idea of her being a feminist icon. It is true that Elle is no longer motivated by Warner in any way by the end of the movie, indicating that she may have grown and seen the errors of her ways, but at no point in the entire film is it directly stated or even implied that Elle has a passion or interest in the study of law. Even if she truly has readjusted her perspective by the end of the film, it comes too late to have any sort of impact, as our impressions of Elle have already been made. Her actions don’t send the message of empowerment to achieve one’s dreams through hard work and passion, but rather to achieve happiness through obtaining the approval of a man. Further damaging the view of Elle as a feminist icon is the fact that she consistently reinforces harmful stereotypes about women. Elle is clearly meant to be presented as a sorority stereotype, but rather than overcoming and breaking free from it, she proves it to be true time and time again. Firstly, Elle reinforces the idea that women are overly emotional and quickly disheartened. In the very first scene of the movie, Elle is dumped by Warner and proceeds to have an emotional breakdown, crying and shrieking loudly in a public setting. This is further reinforced later in the

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