Essay Plan: Playing Out Gender (socialisation & coupling): Weddings 1. Introduction Arranged marriages have long been a concept of the past in most of Western society. In its place has become the institution of true love and marriage, where women long to meet the man of their dreams, have a visionary wedding, and then live happily ever after together…
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Being a wife entails many things, and this has largely been constructed by different civilisations over the years. Recent decades, however, have seen these traditional being challenged in great detail for the first time in quite a long time as women attempt to gain more solid footing in society. One way to accomplish is to slowly recreated the homemaker role into one that is more balanced between the sexes, more accommodating to the desires of the women, and one that is more is open and accepting of sexual minorities. It has recently been said that “many women want to have weeding: few of them want to be wives” (Spender, 1994). This statement is quite profound in terms of the reality that shifting demographics, in addition to renewed feminist attitudes, are reshaping the tradition concept of marriage and family. While Splender’s comment may, on the surface, appear to be absurd, there is certainly an element of truth to you. This can be stated because one has to consider the western construct of the concept ‘wife’. Historically, a wife has been commonly viewed as a homemaker and child-bearer. If that continues to be the reality, then women today have moved beyond that and are not desiring of the tradition definition utilised by society for generations. The very concept of ‘wife’, therefore, is shifting. Until that mindset is complete, however, women will likely hesitate to be viewed as a wife, but will still look forward to and long for their dream wedding. This paper explores the playing out of gender in terms of socialisation and coupling, with a particular focus on the role that weddings will likely play in Western society moving forward. 2. Theoretical Context Feminism is really about questioning the societal roles that attempt to define and confine the place that women have in our culture. In essence, as Judith Butler continually points out, it is about stepping out from the commonly conceived notions of gender and reconstructing an entirely new identity. Her groundbreaking 1990 book and theoretical expose on gender issues, “Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity” reinvigorates the discussion of women and their role in society by demonstrating the even those on the sexual margins should be gradually more accepted into the society’s fold. Butler herself, through this book, begins to question the very definition of woman. She effectively does this by looking at the masculine and feminine constructs existent in society today, and how those have changed over the years. While Butler moves far out into theory relating to sexual minorities in this book, her focus is primarily on the feminist thought process. This theoretical construct relates well to the theory in question for this essay. She talks at length, for example, about a women’s desire to dress, sometimes provocatively, in order to show off the feminine form. At the same time, however, the modern feminist wants to challenge the masculine nature of our society, making it in almost universal subject open for debate. This relates well to the institution of marriage. With the traditional mindset that there are definite masculine and feminine roles to be carried out by husbands and wives respectively, Butler would contend that today’s woman has the right to challenge these concepts.
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