“Marilyn vs. Jackie” by Tatiana Herman

“Marilyn vs. Jackie” by Tatiana Herman

Stereotypes are the beliefs we hold about the attributes of other people in a particular group. They can either be negative or positive, but always have the potential of hurting someone’s feelings or offending them. They also have the tendency to be overgeneralized, and at times be completely wrong.

Watch following clip until 2:50

This clip illustrates that Warner has a strong stereotypical view of his girlfriend, Elle. He sees her as a fun, pretty blonde that will be a silly distraction to him in law school and hold him back from a serious career in politics. As he is breaking up with her he explains that if he is going to be a senator by the time he’s 30, then he needs to marry a “Jackie” (referring to Jackie Kennedy) and not a “Marilyn” (referring to Marilyn Monroe). The movie itself sets up the viewer to see Elle in this light as well. It’s easy to stereotype Elle as a silly, dumb blonde with not a care in the world- as she is clearly “Queen Bee” in her sorority and has daddy’s plastic to support her luxurious lifestyle. However, later in the movie she makes it clear that she is smart, full of integrity, caring, and works hard for what she wants. None of these characteristics are represented in the blonde stereotype.

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  1. #1 by saraxan on May 22, 2012 - 8:44 PM

    What I love about this movie (and this clip specifically) is that it shows that no matter what the stereotype is, it can have negative implications. For example, many girls would be flattered to be like Marilyn. In the movie, Elle is beautiful and has all the worldly possessions a girl could want, but she doesn’t appreciate the stereotype and tries to defy it. I think it is important to recognize that any stereotype can be harmful depending on the person’s perspective. While some girls would like to have Elle’s stereotype, to Elle, it is more of a curse because no one takes her seriously, and her law school boyfriend dumps her. We should be careful about what stereotypes we use.

    Sara Walker

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