The feminist rhetoric in the film is directed inwards, towards the right to self expression and self realization through her existence as an independent woman separate from a man and through her empathy with other women in the film (O’Brien, 2000).Female sexuality is the gender artifact in the film. Brokovich wears nine inch heels, tight mini skirts and eye popping low cut blouses that reinforce the society stereotype of “tart.” Why is this element of sexuality so important in the film? Because of all the connotations that go along with it. The implied promiscuity of the main character could have proved to be a distraction from the important social and political message in the film. But the film is geared to explode the stereotype, through its emphasis on the character’s right to self expression in a manner that satisfies her rather than conforming to society’s expectations of her.The first step in the analysis of the artifact is its conception of gender on the audience (Foss 155). The overt sexuality in the film and the character’s tribulations in the initial quarter of the film are a typical reflection of society’s attitude towards working class women. The character of Masry, Brokovich’s lawyer who could have negotiated a good settlement in her car accident is dismissive in his attitude because of the male perspective from which he views her – as a sexually promiscuous woman who basically deserves nothing better. The Judge and jury in the car accident case are similarly prejudiced against Brokovich because of the way she dresses, defying all the conventional norms of society in its perception of what is considered feminine and “respectable”. The feminity displayed in the. Feminist Criticism on Erin Brockovich.
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