Abstract or Introduction
How is Gender Represented in “The Birthday Party” and to what Extent Can It Be Seen as a Portrayal of Stereotypical Gender Roles? There is no doubt about the importance of the gender discussion over the last sixty years, especially since the start of the feminism movement in the 1960s. What exactly is gender and how should gender types behave? Out of these discussions a certain kind of awareness about gender arose and people started to recognize gender roles patterns in almost every part of daily life. But even when gender roles have changed significantly, there is still a traditional or stereotypical understanding of what gender should look like. Even in the entertainment industry - which also includes drama.
Concerning the gender discussion one playwright should get our attention: Harold Pinter. Victor L. Cahn said that “Pinter always dramatizes men and women as fundamentally contrasting in nature, with distinct values and desires revealed in the seemingly eternal struggle for power”. One can assume that there has to be a certain pattern of gender role representation in Pinter’s plays. The Birthday Party from 1957 is his second full-length play.
The leading question of this term paper will be how gender is represented in The Birthday Party and to what extent it can be seen as a portrayal of stereotypical gender roles. We will first have a look at gender roles in general (chapter 2) including a view on traditional female gender roles (chapter 2.1) and on traditional male gender roles (chapter 2.2). In chapter 3 we will have a look at several scenes from the play and compare them with our findings about traditional or stereotypical gender roles.
- Quote paper
- Nathalie Schmitt (Author), 2020, The Representation of Gender Roles in Harold Pinter's Play "The Birthday Party", Munich, GRIN Verlag, https://www.grin.com/document/1268772