Ways to Be a Woman

This site will present on the social construction of gender, specifically looking at differing views of feminism and womanhood as they are portrayed and adapted in different settings. Its intent is to demonstrate that gender performance and womanhood is not a simple outline, rather a complex, undefinable social phenomena. Each section will different performances of gender as seen in Black women in the Black Panther Party, women who struggle with body image, musical artists (Riot Grrrl), and women in the media. The introduction will discuss the notion that gender is a performance and larger gender theories like intersectionality. The subsections will provide a deeper dive into the theoretical frameworks and literature that discusses gender as a social construction, specifically that feminine activities are not inherent to women, rather taught through generational actions and beliefs. Each subsequent subsection will provide a specific example of the portrayal of the performance of gender across different historical contexts. These subsections will grapple with larger topics, such as race and sexuality, and these topics’ intersectionality with gender. The Black Panther Party will be a main discussion point in our project and is the earliest performance of gender that will be discussed, starting in 1966. The project will go until present day as women in media and TV are still growing and changing.

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