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alex davis t. myers eng101 05 mar.

2008 portfolio 2 – rough draft 3 if you don't have anything beneficial to say, don't say anything at all sine the beginning of storytelling, there has been a constant format that can describe nearly any good tale. in most stories, there is an antagonist and a protagonist, who are frequently engaged in a conflicting set of views, actions, and emotions. often times, this template can apply to real life struggles as well. the current situation regarding the feminist movement is an exception to this rule however. in the earlier nineteenth century, there was a large-scale documented change in the way that women wanted to be perceived, and in the way they went about changing their social status. in recent years, it seems that the movement has become somewhat stagnant. some of the modern writers who think they are producing material that will excel women's social standing while in reality, these writers are only encouraging the ideas that true feminists would feel, are contributing to the inequalities in gender. lynda barry has ventured into one of the most interesting and informal forms of writing known to mankind; the graphic essay. although this is a much less serious source of information, graphic stories tend to be more entertaining, while the author conveys the precise imagery that they intend to describe. in barry’s autobiographical graphic essay entitled “girlness”, she identifies herself as a tomboy immediately. she has no shame that this is how she grew up, but does not seem happy about her image at the time, despite the fact that the majority of girls barry knew were also identified as tomboys. barry’s mother was one of the main factors attributing to her social image, as she almost never bought

barry anything unnecessary. barry’s interactions with the neighborhood girly-girls could easily be described as a clash between two worlds. when barry would try to play with her feminine counterparts, they looked down at her with disgust in her choice of clothing and toys. the girly-girls couldn’t be more disrespectful to poor barry, and it wasn’t until she met an asian girl named mariko that she saw what an alternative home life would be like. mariko’s mother was even more disgusted by barry, and treated her like a rabid animal, not allowing her to make contact with mariko’s toys. this is the point in the essay in which barry realizes that being a tomboy has it’s advantages, as mariko is heartbroken upon soiling her fancy tennis shoes in the mud. at the end of barry’s essay, she describes taking in a 13 year old girl named norabelle. barry immediately begins buying her a tremendous amount of girly goods that her own mother never would have allowed her to own. barry is doing the opposite of helping norabelle, by giving her the very goods that would encourage the lifestyle of an unpleasant girly-girl. by beginning to spawn another one of the people that made barry’s childhood miserable, she is completely contradicting everything she should have learned in her youth. another example of contradicting ideas in feminist writing can be found in emily prager’s 1991 essay; “our barbies, ourselves”. prager makes the argument that barbie was invented by a man, in hopes of using it as a weapon to destroy the female image. she then states her displeasure with the barbie doll’s unnaturally proportioned physical features, and even goes so far as to say it’s unfair that she never got to see the ken doll’s genitals as a girl. prager’s reasoning for this displeasure completely avoids the idea that mattel

(barbie's manufacturer) probably didn’t want to become the world’s leader in miniature plastic groin. does barbie’s love life leave too much to the imagination, in lieu of prager’s opinion? yes, and for a good reason. barbie is designed for young girls who would rather imagine a normal day in the life of barbie, rather than prager who constantly fantasizes about the plastic couple’s sexual exploits in barbie’s hot-tub. despite the face value of the barbie doll, there were some long term effects resulting from the doll’s introduction. barbie’s physical complexion changed what some women view to be attractive. prager feels that this has resulted in the recent popularity of plastic surgery procedures. in addition, the ken doll was so physically perfect that it eliminated prager’s chances of finding a man that could fill the void that ken created. now, the victimized author must face a life of solitude, thanks to the barbie doll collection. read this list of injustices to any feminist, and they would surely never be able to look at a barbie doll without grimacing again. prager on the other hand “loved” her barbie. by publishing this article, she has only reversed the progress made by women everywhere who are dedicating their lives to the social progression of women. offensive language has been a part of human life since the beginning of communication. different people find different things offensive, so it is usually easier to attack someone based on a noticeable physical attribute, if the goal of an exchange is simply to offend. things that people cannot change usually qualify as grounds for the most hurtful language, although some people may not be bothered by such statements whatsoever. in order for language to be truly offensive, the words used must be specific to a racial, sexual, ethnic, social, national, or gender group. barbara lawrence’s essay “four letter words can hurt you” describes how she feels about some of the derogatory terms

used towards women. this piece was written in the seventies, but still remains truthful in today’s society. lawrence’s main argument is that women are being denied their individuality in the eyes of society. she is calling for sexually charged offensive language to be brought to public attention, as people may be unaware of the injustice taking place. lawrence couldn’t be more wrong about the causes of this offensive language. the author thinks that because women are socially insignificant, language has surfaced that describes how some people view their status. women are actually a widely recognized social group, and this language has only surfaced to be used offensively towards women, no differently than any other form of offensive language. when used correctly, this slang can be extremely offensive, but not differently than any other form of offensive dialogue used at most hurtful of times. there will always be offensive language used specifically towards women. it’s existence does not necessarily indicate an inequality among sexes.

rough draft 3 revisions: - full grammar sweep & removal of several unnecessary passages.