Comparison of Billy Elliot and Grease Essays

Comparison of Billy Elliot and Grease Essays

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The musicals Billy Elliot and Grease present both conventional and unconventional representations of gender throughout. Both musicals also seem to obscure the message of the underlying gender stereotyping issues by overshadowing them with elements such as music, dance and costume.

Men have been stereotyped as dominant, strong, brave and aggressive. Also there is an image of men being portrayed as harder workers than women and supposedly the more intelligent gender.
“Men are thought to be physically tougher, more aggressive, more rational, better able to handle sex without love, and more likely to be successful at work by virtue of their greater will to win.” (Nicholson, 1993, 2)
Most often, men have less of an emotional attachment to other people as they are seemingly less sensitive than women, which would explain the stronger ability men have for handling sex without love. Physically and mentally men are seen to be stronger than women which is why they can be seen as more perseverant and determined workers, therefore making them more likely to succeed in work.
The character of Tony from Billy Elliot follows all of the regular stereotypes we associate with being masculine. He shows his bravery and aggressiveness through his forceful engagement in the riots, and also through the fact that he shows no sign of respect for people in authority. His dominance is emanated through his firm and stable posture and his particularly demanding manner over Billy. Tony represents the typical male in Billy Elliot, and he see’s Billy’s interest in dance as something feminine, therefore not a respectable interest for a young boy, as dance is most often considered a woman’s hobby.

On the other hand, females have been stereotyped as being passive,...


... middle of paper ...


...dtrack (2000) [CD track] 4mins. 53secs. He could be a star. Original cast recording.
4. Denisoff, R.S and Romanowski, W.D. (1991) Risky Business: Rock in Film. New Jersey: Transaction Publishers. Page 241.
5. Everett, W. A. and Laird, P. A. (2008) The Cambridge Companion to the musical. 2nd edition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Page 332.
6. Koller, V., (2008), ‘Not just a colour’: pink as a gender and sexuality marker in visual communication, Visual Communication, I (4) November p.401.
7. Lancioni, J. (2006) Cinderella Dances Swan Lake: Reading Billy Elliot as Fairytale. Journal of Popular Culture, 39, (5), page 718, 723.
8. Malone, T. (2010) Utopia, Nostalgia, Grease: How a Film can create a Stage Legacy. Theatre Annual, 63, (18p), Page 50.
9. Nicholson, J. (1993) Men and Women: how different are they? 2nd Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Page 2.

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