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Beneath the Surface: An Examination of Masculinity and Femininity in Dennis Lehane's Mystic River
Umeå University, Faculty of Arts, Department of language studies.
2016 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesisAlternative title
Under Ytan : Maskulinitet och Femininitet i Dennis Lehane's Mystic River (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

On the surface, Dennis Lehane’s novel Mystic River appears quite fascinated and occupied with macho ideals and ideas of heroism, vengeance, vigilantism, violence, and blind loyalty. The novel might even be said to paint a picture of a world ultimately ruled and controlled by men, who are expected to set the terms and encouraged to take charge. This points to an overt message stating that attributes such as strength, cold practicality, efficiency, action, decisiveness, and rationality – all stereo-typically masculine values – ultimately pay off and are rewarded. However, such an initial analysis may be meaningfully countered, overturned, and distrusted. Making use of feminist deconstruction, this essay argues that Mystic River’s superficial praise of stereotypical gender ideals is in fact undermined by tensions and contradictions beneath the surface of the text. This undermining in turn serves to criticize binary hierarchies at the very core of patriarchal ideology.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 23 p.
Keyword [en]
Gender, Feminism, Deconstruction, Masculine and Feminine Values
National Category
General Literature Studies
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-131707OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-131707DiVA: diva2:1075394
Supervisors
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Available from: 2017-02-19 Created: 2017-02-19 Last updated: 2017-02-19Bibliographically approved

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fulltext(516 kB)19 downloads
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ce156fe4cad751bcad4623e74fa865c848d6f967696386650a85a6a95132166b6b5889dbcff8578465d6f5a2d774cb83f1dcb21e8804b6481c9a05d3f3823e56
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General Literature Studies

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf