Bordo first, introduces to us the concept of the gaze by comparing philosophers and lovers Jean-Paul Sarte and Simone de Beauvior reactions on being gazed at. Beauvior feels that “for the woman the absence of her lover is always torture; he is an eye, a judge… away from him, she is dispossessed”; interestingly, Sarte has an opposite view, that the gaze of a lover is hell for “the other person has stolen ‘the secret’ of who I am. I must fight back, resist their attempts to define ...
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...ccept the unconventional style of the essay and the images that don’t seem appropriate for the classroom. As a reader, you must be willing to remove yourself from how you view gender, sexuality and allow Bordo to show you that how you act, think, and expect others to act is unoriginal. Your views are strategically fed to you; companies banking on the fact that their images will require you to change, ensuring you spend to be like what you see. As a consumer in a capitalist society, we like to think that we know the system, that we’re not affected by the images we see. The essay doesn’t allow us this luxury, it makes us question our ideas of what is masculine and feminine and the roles our culture confines us to. Bordo requires that we dig deeper and ask if our materialism, our desire to be like what we see, is defining who we are and how we expect others to act.
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