Gender Stereotyping In Elinor Burkett 'What Makes A Woman'

Decent Essays
Gender Stereotyping in Elinor Burkett’s “What Makes a Woman?”

In “What Makes a Woman”, Elinor Burkett provides her perspective on the trans movement and its marginalizing rhetoric about women. Identifying ‘women” as a product of social construction, Burkett establishes a sharp gender binary from the outset that differentiates trans women as ill-informed advocates of women. Transwomen fail to recognize that to be a woman consists of much more than mere recognition of physical characteristics consistent with one’s biological sex. While Burkett adequately lays out and supports such claims throughout the article, she fails to clarify a contradicting statement towards the end of her article that identifies men as “bounded, and even strangled, by gender stereotyping” (7). In this essay, I will first address the gender binary in Burkett’s argument. I will then elaborate on the tainted perspectives of women, according to Burkett, that trans women possess. Finally, I will reveal the contradiction that undermines and confounds her logic. I conclude this essay by suggesting further explanation of the statement, or event elimination, to enhance the overall argument.
From the outset, Burkett differentiates women from trans women on social constructivist foundations in order to construct the gender binary. She emphasizes that transsexual women, as biological men, are not in the position to pass judgement on experiences that only non-trans women can experience. Burkett finds the “I was
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