Title page for ETD etd-05122011-231610

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Gellert, Ashley Elizabeth
URN etd-05122011-231610
Title Putting Women Back on Top?: (Re)constituting Power and Audience in The Vagina Monologues
Degree Master of Arts
Department Communication Studies
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Waggenspack, Beth M. Committee Chair
Holloway, Rachel L. Committee Member
Kuypers, James A. Committee Member
  • The Vagina Monologues
  • bell hooks
  • third persona
  • second persona
  • constitutive rhetoric
Date of Defense 2011-04-29
Availability unrestricted
Eve Ensler’s goal in writing The Vagina Monologues was to generate a dialogue regarding women’s sexuality to counter the silence that pervades the patriarchal culture that they inhabit. To achieve this goal, Ensler constructs two ideologies—one grounded in patriarchy and another supposedly grounded in female agency and dialogue—to reveal the problems within the current ideology in hopes that her audience will adopt her new ideology and resolve the detrimental silence women endure. To evaluate its success, this study utilizes an eclectic approach—comprised of constitutive rhetoric, second persona, third persona, and bell hooks’ rhetorical options—to determine if the play’s content encourages the dialogue Ensler desires.
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