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Class and gender in the 1980s. FMS 394: Lesson 10. Guiding questions. How is the U.S. socio-economic landscape changing in the 1980s? How do these shifts relate to young people? How are discourses of gender, particularly of femininity, a site and source of cultural anxieties in the 1980s?

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Class and gender in the 1980s
Class and gender in the 1980s

FMS 394:

Lesson 10


Guiding questions
Guiding questions

  • How is the U.S. socio-economic landscape changing in the 1980s? How do these shifts relate to young people?

  • How are discourses of gender, particularly of femininity, a site and source of cultural anxieties in the 1980s?

  • How do we see the intersections of class and gender anxieties playing out in films like Pretty In Pink?

  • What are the ideological ramifications (for discourses of gender and of class) of John Hughes’ choice to situate discussions about class conflict within romance narratives?


Class and economics in the 1980s
Class and economics in the 1980s

  • Individualism

    • Intensification of older ideals

    • Privileges the privileged

  • Acquisition

    • Emphasis on luxury

  • Transformation

    • Consumption now moral


Backlash and postfeminism gender in the 1980s
“Backlash” and Postfeminism: gender in the 1980s

  • “Backlash” (Faludi)

    • The Big Lie

  • Postfeminism

    • Feminism is “taken into account”

  • Femininity in Advertising

    • Individualism, Acquisition, and Transformation


  • Class and gender in pretty in pink
    Class and Gender in Pretty in pink

    • Wealth, Work, and Worth

    • Anxieties presented in relationships

      • Andi and The Richies

      • Andi and Ducky

      • Andi and Iona

      • Andy and Blaine


    Romance class struggles and hughes teen angst movies
    Romance, Class Struggles, and Hughes’ Teen Angst Movies

    • Molly Ringwald as Postfeminist Heroine?

    • What is the solution to class struggle?

    • If love conquers all, what does that say about economic inequality?


    Next time on fms 394
    Next Time on FMS 394

    Teens, Race,and Masculinity in the 1990s


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