What is Female Masculinity?

The reading that stuck with me is Halberstam “Female Masculinity”. When I was reading this paper all I could think about was how can one person determine what is considered for boys and what is considered for girls and have society accept it. Halberstam says that as long as a child is in the prepubescent stage being a tomboy isn’t threatening but once she hits puberty she needs to “act her gender”. Personally this statement angers me because up until I was 12 I was a tomboy, but if I continued being a tomboy I would be considered a “threat” to society?! I would wear sweatpants, a sweatshirt and sneakers everyday and looking back now I could tell people were wondering why I wasn’t dressing like a “typical girl”. How can a girl dressing the way she feels comfortable and herself make people around her feel uncomfortable and judgmental. Halberstam mentions a situation when two females felt uncomfortable because they weren’t sure if a woman in the woman’s restroom was female because she looked masculine. Since when was there one set look for a female to look like. I think that people have a mindset that females need to be petite and feminine all the time and if a female steps out of the boundaries (and has big muscles or dresses differently) people don’t know what to do and feel threatened. Take Ellen DeGeneres for an example she never dresses like a “typical girl” and people don’t question her. Is it because she’s famous she has a hierarchy status. Society needs to realize that gender isn’t a boxed in subject and that woman will dress and act they way she wants to.

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