The Construction of Femininity in Shopping

Yan Huang


In different historical stages, the nature of women has been explained from the religious myth, the moral principles, the scientific rationality and the psychological analysis. In the consumer society, the widespread consumption not only changes people’s daily life but also their social relations, world views and values. Men and women with the effect of commodities show different characteristics. The consumption generalization is the basic fact in the consumer society. Women, as the important consuming power, become the key target group for enterprises and media. In order to correspond with the commercial operation, the mass media guides women and constructs a femininity to serve for the commercial profits.

Generally speaking, consumption culture constructs femininity from the following two aspects: on the one side, it constructs a modern female beauty standard—young, beautiful and sexy. Women thus become a huge consuming group of hairdressing and fashion. On the other side, it still advocates the traditional image of good housewives. Female consumers are oriented as the agent purchasers for the whole family. It demonstrates in this paper that shopping is sexual consuming. Woman’s beautiful image and good housewives image presents on their “agent purchasers” role in shopping.

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International Journal of English and Cultural Studies 

ISSN  (2575-811X)  E-ISSN  (2575-8101)

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