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Gilmore Girls and the Politics of Identity: Essays on Family and Feminism in the Television Series [Paperback]

Ritch Calvin

Price: CDN$ 38.16 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Book Description

June 1 2008 0786437278 978-0786437276
This work examines the television series "Gilmore Girls" from a post-feminist perspective, evaluating how the show's main female characters and supporting cast fit into the classic portrayal of feminine identity on popular television. The book begins by placing "Gilmore Girls" in the context of the history of feminism and feminist television shows such as "Mary Tyler Moore" and "One Day at a Time". The remainder of the essays examine the series from a number of perspectives, looking at its portrayal of traditional and non-traditional gender identities and familial relationships.The topics include the hyper-real utopia represented by "Gilmore Girls'" fictional Stars Hollow; the faux-feminist perspective offered by Rory Gilmore's unfulfilling (and often masochistic) romantic relationships; the ways in which "mean girl" Paris Geller both adheres to and departs from the traditional archetype of female power and aggression; and the role of Lorelai Gilmore's oft-criticized marriage in destroying the show's central theme of single motherhood during its seventh season. The work also studies the role of food and its consumption as a narrative device throughout the show's development, evaluating the ways in which food negotiates, defines, and upholds the characters' gendered and class performances. The work also includes a complete episode guide listing the air date, title, writer, and director of every episode in the series.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 221 pages
  • Publisher: McFarland & Company (June 1 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786437278
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786437276
  • Product Dimensions: 23 x 17 x 1 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 295 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,051,232 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Ritch Calvin teaches in the women's studies program at SUNY Stony Brook in New York.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gilmore Lives On Jan. 14 2009
By L. E. Johnston - Published on
There's an old saying, "If you love something, let it go." Well, we all had to let go of the Gilmore Girls when they went off the air, but now here's a way they've come back to us. This book is not only interesting, but it's like talking with your girlfriends about your favorite show. My mom and I ("freakishly linked," I think is how Rory said it!) both really enjoyed it...

Despite a few technical errors only obsessed fans would notice- for example an author of one of the essays says something about how both Emily & Richard went to Yale. They did not both go to Yale, only Richard did. In "I Am Kayak, Hear Me Roar" Emily clearly states that she went to Smith and majored in history. It is annoying that whoever wrote that essay obviously didn't watch the show, but at the same time, it's a totally excusable mistake because that was not the point of the essay.

If you love the Gilmore Girls, this one is fun too:
Coffee at Luke's: An Unauthorized Gilmore Girls Gabfest (Smart Pop series)
5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Mildly entertaining, filled with silly and often wacky interpretations March 17 2010
By Mr. Jones - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
1.This is a collection of essays edited by a lecturer at SUNY Stony Brook (Now Stony Brook University). The contributors are either PhD students, or recent PhDs, and a high school graduate (who teams up with her mom, a college prof.)
2. In general, the essays are entertaining, but not the way the authors intended. Sad but true. Academics who specialize in English cannot write clearly and concisely. Instead, per academic custom, they rely on academic jargon that really weighs down the collection. The collection would be lighter by 50% without academic jargon.
3. As for the essays. The essays make often silly and wacky interpretations. The main problem is the contributors attempt to fit the show into their preconceived notion of theory about gender roles, etc. This often fails (Details about specific essays to follow). Many of the contributors have an odd conception of men, and hence miss out on the the significance of Dean and Luke (played by a husky actor who reached AAA baseball).

I will later post specific comments about each essay.
0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Gilmore Girls and the Politics of Identity Aug. 1 2010
By Runa - Published on
I have very mixed feelings about this book. I felt like a lot of things could have been done to make it a more enjoyable read. I know it's supposed to be an academic research book, but come on, you know it's the Gilmore Girls fans who are ultimately going to be the ones reading this. I would have loved larger font size and footnotes at the ends of the pages, as opposed to being clumped at the very end of each essay, but I'm just picky like that, I suppose. The various essays do bring up some fascinating new insights on the show, and through most of them I wondered if Amy Sherman Palladino herself had read the book--it'd probably give her new thoughts about her own show! The individual essays that will appeal to you are highly going to be determined by your own interests. You will not like each essay, and you will not dislike each essay, and more than likely, you'll end up with a healthy mix of essays you liked and disliked. I would really love a book like this that was more for the everyday fan, though, and not someone who is a scholar of pop culture, if such a thing exists.

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