Just One Of The Guys Essay

1959 words - 8 pages

If a person was asked what he or she thought males and females are like, what would he or she answer? There was such a survey done, and the list for females was as follows: “compassionate, loves children, dependent, interpersonally sensitive, nurturing,” while the list for males was “leader, aggressive, ambitious, analytical, competitive, dominant, independent, and individualistic” (Fine 3-4). By this standard, all women are interpersonally sensitive, and all men are aggressive. Is this true? In some cases these generalizations may be true, but in many others this is far from the truth, making these lists gender stereotypes. Gender stereotypes can be found in many places including magazines, television shows, real life, and movies. Movies in general are overflowing with an innumerable amount of stereotypes. Just One of the Guys, in particular, is a movie that focuses on gender stereotypes. In the movie, the main character, Terry Griffith, reinforces “all [of] the clichés” surrounding both male and female genders while she is learning to be a boy, changing between the two genders, and demonstrating her actions and interactions as a boy (Denby 543).
Terry Griffith is well known at her high school for many reasons; one reason being that she is in journalism class and writes for the school newspaper. When her paper is not picked for a summer job contest at The Sun Tribune she confronts her journalism teacher about it. When he tells her “You should have something to fall back on. […] You’re a pretty girl you can be a model,” Terry is outraged and believes that her teacher did not pick her article because she is a woman. This is a male gender stereotype because Terry concludes that her teacher is being sexist. Many women in today’s society believe all men are sexist, which is a female stereotype on its own. However after Terry gets home she devises a plan to create a “male version” of herself (Denby 442). By recreating herself as a male she hopes to proof her theory about her teacher correct and win the summer internship. Terry tests her rough version of her new self, Terrance, out on her brother. Terry knocks on the door as Terrance and her brother, Buddy, Answers. Buddy does not immediately recognize Terry. Terry decides that her plan is a fool proof because she “fooled [her] own brother” (Just). Then she convinces Buddy, the epitome of male stereotypes, to teach her how to be male. He starts with the basic “ball scratch,” and after some failure Terry exclaims, “Maybe my balls don’t itch,” and Buddy argues, “All Balls itch, it’s a fact” (Just). Buddy is trying to get across that the “ball scratch” is part of every man’s basic behavior when, in fact, it is not. Buddy’s notion is making people think that all men are living the cliché of acting like “pigs.” Terry is also creating herself as another stereotype; she has become a girly girl. A girly girl is a girl who is thought of as pretty, clean, smart, and always in the...

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