Codes of Gender Video
Tuesday, November 06, 2012
Identity and performance in pop culture
• If we can't decide what gender a person is, it's harder to interact with them.
If we want to fit in and function normally, we have to learn how to read and act out the
• Goffman book: communication of gender. What advertising tells us about ourselves
• There is nothing natrual about gender identity: it is part of a porcess where we take on
certain attributes that we think are apporpriate.
• Sex: different biological characteristics
• Gender: our advertisments of what the characteristics are.
• Gender: is a social created idea
• Gender display: the process where we perforom what is expected of us within our
• The human body: the way we walk: becomes medium of the way we communicate.
• Make visible what seems to be invisible
• Advertising: commercial realism: portraying what could be real. Goffman focuses on
them because of what their seeming nrmality tells us about oursleves.
The Feminine Touch
• Hands are represented differently in advertising. Femail hands are show as letting the
enviornment is controlling them. Femail hands are show as outlining an object . Not whol
hand is used, weak. Fmailes self touch. Symbolicly connected to volnurability. Woman are
in breathless posture or delecatly.
• Male touch is controlling and bold. Manipulating enviornment. Power, strengh
The ritualization of subordination
• Women are often shown laying down. First in this position it is dificult to defend yourself,
giving thm no defense to possible threats. Posture giving in to powerless. 2nd: always
sexualized. Feminity = submisive, powerless and dependent.
• Men: are active, alert, ready to respond, standing.
• Gay men use women's "laying down" in their
• Bshfu knee bend: placing women upsright and unbalanced. Projects a sense that she
isn't prepared or bounded.
• Holding their feet or heal of shoe, keeping them off balance: volnuarable and
• Head tilted to side: rather than holding them high and firm