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The liquid woman: A discourse analysis concerning women’s sexual (in)abilities in women’s lifestyle magazines

Haywood, Elizabeth (2013) The liquid woman: A discourse analysis concerning women’s sexual (in)abilities in women’s lifestyle magazines. Manchester Metropolitan University. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Research on sexuality in women’s magazines has identified dominant ideologies that promote sexual role stereotypes. Five women’s lifestyle magazines were analysed to identify ways in which women’s sexuality was represented. Using a Discourse Analysis four different interpretive repertoires were identified: the intimate entrepreneurship repertoire; men-ology; transforming the self (Gill, 2009) and dressed-down libido. A critical feminist analysis of the selected articles regarding how ‘great’ sex could be achieved suggested that far from promoting women’s sexual pleasure and empowerment, men’s sexuality was privileged. Although many discourses represent women as having sexual agency, it can be argued that women’s sexuality has not been ‘liberated’.

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