Gender Stereotypes In The Piano By Jane Campion

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The Piano focuses on the love triangle of Ada, her husband Stewart and her lover Baines. Ada, at the middle of two dominating male characters, is seemly quiet but her bold and manipulative moves show a more calculating side to her character. Jane Campion’s characterisation of multidimensional characters that often bend the gender stereotypes but also play directly into them.

When Baines meets Ada, his attraction to her is instant. The audience witnesses a conversation between Baines and Stewart whereby Baines offers to buy Ada’s piano if she will give him lessons. It is clear that Baines’ intentions in this request are not honest and that he is interest in making a sexual advance towards the newly married Ada. This level of calculating manipulation is typically a male characteristic, and his blatant attempt at receive sex from her shows a male stereotype whereby all men are driven by their want for sex.

During the first love scene between Ada and Stewart, Ada attempts to get Stewart into an exposed and compromised position whereby she has power and control over the situation. Stewart ultimately becomes uncomfortable very quickly, playing into the masculine stereotype that men do not like to be dominated. However contrastingly, Stewart has a caring side whereby he becomes a fatherly figure to Ada’s daughter.

The next love scene between Ada and Stewart is more violent and shows the gender stereotypes or expectations coming to the surface. Stewart becomes enraged when

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