Never quite the same

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Montana State University - Bozeman, College of Arts & Architecture


Femininity is a social construct that both hinders and empowers; my thesis work similarly struggles with both of these functions. Western society's view of womanhood has improved over time, but untenable expectations still weigh upon half of humanity. The title of my thesis "Never Quite the Same" describes that being molded by gendered expectations afflicts women for their lifespan, sometimes without their conscious knowledge. Because knowledge and tradition are passed on, the feminine archetype is perpetual. Men and women both continue to impose strict expectations upon females, resulting in a lack of agency for individuals and women as a whole. While I recognize that men also struggle with imposed masculine expectations, my work draws from autobiographical experiences. It cannot be denied that women have struggled with their place and their voice in the world for much longer than men. Those who say that feminism is no longer needed are complacent with the standards of inequality today. I have been scrutinizing gender roles in relation to myself and asking: Why does my gender predetermine how I perceive my private body? Why is my outward appearance praised or slandered first by the public, above my other qualities? Why does my gender identity demonize my sexual autonomy? And why does femininity mean I must be calm and subdued less I am perceived as bossy or a bitch? Questions like these propel my work.




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