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Bridget Jones Feminism Analysis

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Is Bridget Jones a Feminist?
Bridget Jones is the protagonist in Helen Fielding’s 1990 novel Bridget Jones’s Diary. Although this work is fiction, her life seems all too real for many women. The struggles Bridget faces are struggles many women continue to face today for instance, body image, intake of their many vices, being single in their thirties and dating in their thirties. The largest struggle she faces is an identity crisis, causing her position on all of her smaller struggles to be constantly changing. She emerges at the end of the novel with unmistakable inner poise, boldness and self-determination that resembles that of feminist. Bridget Jones speaks for women everywhere, but her message isn’t the clearest on what she advocates for.
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She is a woman who grew up on the 70’s women’s empowerment ideals of sexual liberation and gender equality (). It defines women’s empowerment by the ability to have it all, and the freedom to choose, which is just what Bridget wants. This makes her a post-feminist. The term “post-feminism” was originally coined in1985 by Toril Moi in Sexual/Textual Politics to advocate a feminism that would break down the divide between equality based or “liberal” feminism and difference based or “radical feminism” (Kavka). It came long after most of the feminist dirty work had been done. First wave feminism is responsible for Seneca Falls convention in 1848() which eventually lead to women’s right to vote nearly 40 years after. The next wave of feminism falls on the women of the 1960’s who tirelessly fought for civil rights, and women’s reproductive rights. Their aim was focused on passing the Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution guaranteeing social equality regardless of sex (Rampton). The third wave began with the Miss America pageant protest in the 1960’s and ended with efforts to rid society top-to-bottom of sexism (Rampton) and ended in the mid 1990’s. Then came third wave feminists, “who came of age in the 1990’s, are activists; they are politically engaged in order to achieve feminist goals. They are also said to embrace the diversity, hybridity, contradictions, other waves of feminism may ignore” (Aronson 905). Bridget…show more content…
She begins her year wanting to lose weight and to decrease her thigh circumference in order to change her appearance in hopes of getting a boyfriend. This is problematic for most feminist causes because it is altering oneself in order to seek a male relationship, which promotes that her happiness doesn’t come from her own self-image but the reassurance of it by a man. Bridget become weight obsessed, reporting it every day but doesn’t actively do anything about it. When speaking to Tom and discussing what it’s like to diet she refers to a 1000 calorie intake the definition of a diet. This intake she surpassed every day. So she wanted to de on a diet but never actually was, she was just being calorie conscious and congratulated herself when she was close to her goal, not meeting it. Furthermore she never worked out. If she were truly serious about changing her body image for male attention she would have put in a fair amount of effort in the gym since she wasn’t dieting properly. She fails to do both. Because of this failure it is evident that she doesn’t genuinely believe in losing weight to get a boyfriend, it is just the pop culture fantasy she half-heartedly believes in. Bridget alters her life based on Cosmopolitan, whether it be her actions at a party or rearranging her apartment but it is apparent that she doesn’t genuinely
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