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Femininity and Strength in Seinfeld

Seinfeld was a trailblazing show when it came to new wave comedy. Elaine Benes consistently sticks out as a reinvention of the "typical" woman throughout the show because she is extremely strong, sex positive and self aware for the time. She primarily spends her time with Jerry, George and Kramer, the men of the show, but she is consistently depicted as an equal, both in the comedic sense as well as their day to day lives. How did this depiction of an everyday woman set the scene for more characters to be written like this? Do you think her character suited the show and did its due diligence to women in the US? What could have been done differently?

  • A number of interesting questions that could frame a good discussion. – Sarai Mannolini-Winwood 5 months ago
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  • Elaine's participation in the masturbation competition was a particular trailblazing episode in that respect. So too was her particular fondness for her birthcontrol she stock piled. These are a lot of interesting avenues to explore in this topic for sure! – cchaisson 5 months ago
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  • I wonder how Susan Ross, George's short-lived fiance who died from licking too much envelope adhesive, would play into this discussion. It certainly doesn't seem particularly empowering, but should this be viewed through a feminist lens? Does it have anything important to tell us, or was it just a funny gag? – BenWoodIsMe 5 months ago
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