Siobhan Denton

Andrea Arnold’s ‘American Honey’: A Young Woman Reclaims Her Life’s Trajectory

American Honey

Andrea Arnold’s films largely focus on the female experience, predominantly that of young women transitioning into adulthood. … It is here then, that Arnold’s depiction of female desire and agency warrants praise. Star acts on her own wants and needs, and seeing Jake, acknowledges her longing. She consciously rejects the current trajectory of her life, and intentionally and purposefully seeks a new one.

Flaws Make the Woman: In Praise of ‘Love’s Mickey Dobbs

Love TV series

Too often, representations of women fall into clichéd binary opposites in the style of Levi-Strauss. Thus, TV shows feature the “good” woman in direct conflict with the “bad” woman, with this clash driving the narrative forward. Mickey encompasses both; she is simultaneously good and bad, selfish and giving, childish and mature. It is this complexity that ensures Mickey’s believability and development as a character. She is real and human, and thus, relatable.

‘Parks and Recreation’: Leslie Knope’s Problem with Women

Parks and Rec

For Leslie, feminism means, rather simplistically, that she admires women who are in power, believing that gender should be no barrier for achievement. Unfortunately, despite Leslie’s determination to highlight her dedication to furthering the feminist cause, her understanding is not only crude and rather rudimentary, but can, frequently, be damaging. Her identification as a feminist is, much like Tina Fey’s Liz Lemon on ’30 Rock,’ hugely lacking in intersectionality. This is even more frustrating considering that three of the four female cast members are women of color.

‘Grey’s Anatomy’ and Assertive Sisters

Grey's Anatomy

Meredith doesn’t feel obligated to form relationships with Maggie and Amelia due to her sibling connections with them. She doesn’t deem it necessary to acquaint herself with Maggie simply because they share a mother, nor does she try to force a friendly relationship between herself and Amelia simply because she’s the sister of the man she loves. This means then, that when these close relationships are formed, they are all the more powerful. They are formed through choice, not responsibility.

‘Jurassic Park’: Resisting Gender Tropes

Jurassic Park_Ellie

Yet in rewatching ‘Jurassic Park,’ it struck me that not only is Laura Dern’s Dr. Ellie Sattler a portrayal of a female scientist that is largely unseen in film, but she is, on numerous occasions, keenly aware of her gender and how this leads to her treatment.

‘Pretty in Pink’: A Desire for Autonomy

Pretty in Pink

Re-watching the film recently, it seems apparent that rather than Andie allowing herself to submit to Blane and all that he represents, her narrative arc is really a search for a sense of autonomy rather than a desire to transition into a world of privilege. …Blane represents an opportunity to take control of her life, to become increasingly autonomous in her decisions.

‘Game of Thrones’: Is Jon Snow Too Feminine for the Masculine World?

Game of Thrones_Jon Snow

Whilst ostensibly male in terms of gender, Jon Snow’s character is arguably definably feminine through his actions, motivations and interactions with both female and male characters. … This is not to suggest that Jon’s character is not masculine; certainly his actions in battle signal him to be a hero in the archetypical sense, but I am suggesting that Jon Snow’s masculinity coexists with a feminine expression…