Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 13. Number3. September 2022 Pp.482-497
A Critical Stylistic Study of the Notion of Women Empowerment in the
Mona Lisa Smile (2003)
Aya Ali Omar
Department of English.College of Education for Women
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq.
Corresponding Author: email@example.com
Nawal Fadhil Abbas
Department of English, College of Education for Women
University of Baghdad, Baghdad, Iraq
Received:06/16/2022 Accepted:09/04/2022 Published:09/24/2022
This study unveils the ideologies of women empowerment encoded in the Mona Lisa Smile movie (2003). It reveals how the stereotypical image of women born only to be wives and do the duties of upbringing and housework is challenged. Katherine Ann Watson (Julia Roberts), the main character in the movie, wants to make a difference in the next generation of women. She rejects the imposed traditional ideologies. Linguistically, she opposes conventional thinking and seeks to persuade her students that life is about more than getting married. The primary focus of this study is to examine and clarify how the characters’ linguistic choices convey their ideologies concerning the notion of women empowerment. To do this, the researchers apply Jeffries`s (2010) critical stylistics, using of five stylistic tools: Negation, Hypothesizing, Equating and Contrasting, Exemplifying and Enumerating, and lastly, Representing Actions/Events/States. The data for this study consists of four extracts taken from the movie Mona Lisa Smile (2003). The analysis shows that the critical stylistic tools account for a significant portion of the meaning of the text under consideration and contributes to the linguistic formulation of the notion of women empowerment, especially Negation and Hypothesizing processes, which score the highest frequencies while Exemplifying and Enumerating score the lowest.
Keywords: critical stylistics, ideology, Mona Lisa Smile, women empowerment
Cite as: Omar,A.A. , & Abbas, N.F.(2022). A Critical Stylistic Study of the Notion of Women Empowerment in the Mona Lisa Smile (2003) Arab World English Journal, 13 (3) 482-497.
Ahmed, H., & Abbas, N. (2019). Critical Stylistic analysis of the Concept of Extremism in DeLillo’s Falling Man (2007). AWEJ for Translation and Literary Studies, 3(3), 82-106. http://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awejtls/vol3no3.6
Alaghbary, G.A., Alazzany, M., & Al-Nakeeb (2015). Linguistic approaches to ideology: Review of work between 1979 and 2010. International Journal of Applied Linguistics and English Literature, 4(5), 1-10. http://dx.doi.org/10.7575/aiac.ijalel.v.4n.5p.1
Brikci, N. Judith, & G. (2007). A guide to using qualitative research methodology. Retrieved from https://cloudfront.ualberta.ca/-/media/science/research-andteaching/teaching/qualitative-research-methodology.pdf
Carter, R., & Simpson, P. (Eds.). (1989). Language, discourse and literature: An introductory reader in discourse stylistics. Unwin Hyman.
Hamdan, A. (2005). “Mona Lisa Smile”: More than a smile. International Educational Journal, 6(3), 417-420
Dewi, S., Hendro, D., & Sutjiati, R (2009). A cultural study on an ideal woman in Mona Lisa Smile (A feminist approach).
Fairclough, N. (2003). Analyzing Discourse and Text: Textual Analysis for Social Research.
Jeffries, L. (2007). Textual construction of the female body: A critical discourse approach. Palgrave Macmillan
Jeffries, L. (2010). Critical stylistics: The power of English. Palgrave Macmillan.
Kabeer, N. (2005). Gender equality and women’s empowerment: A critical analysis of the third millennium development goal. Gender and Development, 13(1), 13-24. http://doi.org/10.1080/13552070512331332273
Kidwai, S., & Ahmad, M. (2016, March). Portrayal of empowered women in movies around the major world cinemas [Conference paper]. International Conference on Women Studies & Social Sciences, Carmel College for Women, Goa.
Lewin, T. (2012). Real-world: Empowering representations of women through film. IDS Bulletin, 43(5), 110-116 http://doi:10.1111/j.1759-5436.2012.00371.x
Mawarni, R. (2017). An analysis of feminism in Mona Lisa Smile movie script, (Unpublished Bachelor`s Thesis), Muhammadiyah Sumatera Utara Mesan University. Available at http://repository.umsu.ac.id/handle/123456789/3947
Narayan, D. (2005). Measuring empowerment: Cross-disciplinary perspectives. The World Bank.
Newell, M. (Director). (2003). Mona Lisa smile [Film]. Revolution Studios; Red Om Films; Columbia Pictures.
Putri, E. M. W. (2010).Katherine’s conflict of interests in Mike Newell’s Mona Lisa Smile: A psychoanalytic approach (A. 320 040 299), (Unpublished Bachelor`s Thesis). Muhammadiyah University of Surakarta. Retrieved from http://eprints.ums.ac.id/7351/1/A320040299.PDF
Reisigl, M., & Wodak, R. (2001). Discourse and Discrimination: Rhetorics of racism and anti-Semitism. Routledge.
Sharma, P. & Varma, S. (2008). Women empowerment through entrepreneurial activities of self-help groups. Indian Research Journal of Extension Education, 8(1), 46-51.
Simpson, P. & Mayr, A. (2010). Language and power. Routledge.
Tetnowski, J. A., & Damcio, J. S. (2001). A demonstration of the advantages of qualitative methodologies in stuttering research. Journal of Fluency Disorder, 26(1), 17-42. https://doi/10.1016/S0094-730X(01)00094-8