Week 12 Blog Post

Sex and the City is a film about a polyamorous relationship centering four lesbian women and their efforts to aid each other in performing femininity in the cishetero mainstream world. Carrie is getting married to Big, but her public image is threatened by his hesitation on their wedding day. Miranda’s efforts at performing a happy, heterosexual family are frustrated by her husband’s affair (because he was unhappy that she couldn’t show him enough affection because she doesn’t like men).

Miranda and Carrie find solace in each other, and their romantic bond grows. They eventually help each other regain control over their performances of heteronormativity while still centering their relationship over all. Carrie also has a brief dalliance with Louise, portrayed by the incredible Jennifer Hudson. Louise’s romantic constraints are frustrated, her being a black woman in a film that centers the world around white women, so she has to move to St. Louis to successfully perform heterosexuality.

Charlotte really loves her kids, and her husband serves really as a slightly more present sperm donor and babysitter. Charlotte’s devotion to Carrie really shows when she internalizes Carrie’s pain over Big’s indecision. Samantha is really frustrated by her relationship with Smith, and continually watches her neighbor having sex, jealous of the fact that he is able to sleep with so many women while she has to stay loyal to Smith. She eventually leaves the relationship, focusing on her love for herself and freeing herself up to have all the sex she wants. She moves back to New York to be with the women she loves again.

The final scene shows that the love between the four women, not their relation to the men in their lives, overpowers all. Carrie talks about how she doesn’t like labels anymore (“labels almost ruined it”), showing that their tactic for surviving in a world that is hostile towards homosexuality is performing heterosexuality with the men in their lives while always maintaining that their relationships with each other are the most important.

One thought on “Week 12 Blog Post

  1. Hi Ruva,
    Please see my post on your second response to this prompt. This doesn’t respond to the fact that a lesbian spectator reads other forms – behaviors, codes, types of performance in order to make a non-heteronormative identification with a work. It’s important to reference Stacy Wolf’s nuanced argument here about spectatorship – that one has to look for stylizations and forms through which one can make a different viewing experience which allows for a partial identification. Here you just retell the narrative as a lesbian narrative. She doesn’t do that – instead she allows herself to see the lesbian in the existing performance by emphasizing different elements of performance.


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