‘Madonna Studies’

Posted on January 18, 2012 by


I found a cool article that connects Judith Butler’s “Gender Trouble” with Madonna. In this article, Reena Mistry explains well,

“In that Madonna parodies traditional female stereotypes and adopts at her will identities that ‘contradict’ herself as a heterosexual female, Butler’s idea of the ability for a ‘variable construction of identity’ (ibid:9) beyond traditional binary constructions is exposed”.

Traditional binary constructions, as I interpret, are the female/ male gender binaries. The way Madonna expresses herself as a sexual female contradicts the traditional female/ male binary, exposing a “variable construction of identity”. Mistry  goes on, “people are not restricted to (in addition to ‘traditional’ gender identities) the empowered female, gay and lesbian; in true queer theory style, ‘one could participate in a range of identities – such as the lesbian heterosexual, a heterosexual lesbian, a male lesbian, a female gay man, or even a feminist sex-radical’ (Schwichtenberg 1993:141)”. I think she does this well in her music video Vogue, where in costume change she goes from wearing a highly sexual, form fitting see through top to a suit dancing with men. There is ambiguity in her gender role.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GuJQSAiODqI&ob=av2n “It makes no different if you’re black or white, if you’re a boy or girl”





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