Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Mean Girls: An American Ideology

Mean girls is an iconic movie of the 2000’s that has a huge following. In this way, it is still relevant and influential in todays society. This film discusses social environments in high school and how people subdivide into cliques based on social rank and interest. In this way, it attempts to describe the high school experience from the point of view of the most popular group, how they maintain their status, and what they did to get there. This film portrays women as nothing without a man, and that their sole goal in life is to be in a relationship with an attractive mate, therefore perpetuating this ideology.

The story begins with new student Cady Heron (main character) who falls into the most popular clique, at first as merely a joke in order to spy on the evil leader Regina George. However, she falls in love with Regina’s ex boyfriend, whom Regina “steals” back again after she realizes Cady’s interest in him, leaving cady utterly infuriated and depressed. This is the main focus of the entire first half of the movie. Just two girls googly eyed over one boy. As if they had no homework, school activities, or interests other than sex and obtaining this boy. To such an extent that this is the only thing happening into the movie for the first half. Not to mention that after the fact that Regina commits this injustice, Cady goes into a tyrannical voiceover lasting over two minutes showing her desperation for a man and that clearly she and all women are nothing without one.

This story also portrays this ideology in a second more backhanded way when Cady decides that the best way to make herself likable to Regina’s ex boyfriend “Aaron Samuels” is to commit to her popular girl status. To achieve this, Cady purposefully fails math so that Aaron will see her as less threatening and relatable stating “yah, i'm failing math now, isn’t that funny?!”. This in so many ways is telling young women that in order to obtain a mate (clearly the sole purpose in life) is to become an object. What I mean by this is that, a woman who thinks for herself and makes a difference in this movie is portrayed as unworthy of a mate. Instead, a woman who portrays herself as a sexual object, contributes nothing to society, and acts as a less intelligent form of herself is worthy of being domesticated.

Lastly, to get back at Regina for the great injustice of stealing Aaron, Cady decides to get revenge. In doing so, she spends most of the year plotting and acting against Regina secretly in order to reduce her social status. She plans on doing this in three ways causing Regina to lose her “hot body, army of skanks, and Aaron Samuels”. This therefore conveys once again that women are only important as sexual objects who are married/dating etc. Let alone the fact that they should drop everything else to achieve this, as nowhere in this movie is Cady seen doing homework or anything else to better herself.


  1. I thought it was interesting that you chose this specific stereotype, as I think it is something most high school students see almost everyday. I completely support your argument, and would agree that modern day media significantly perpetuates this stereotype.

  2. I completely agree with your argument. I found it very interesting that you choose this movie. Now thinking back to all of those times that I have seen this movie, I haven't really thought much about the it besides it being an iconic film. You gave specific plot details that helped support your argument. Good job!

  3. I agree that Mean Girls perpetuates some rather unfortunate stereotypes, especially about what high school life is like. However, at least by the end of the movie Cady sees the error of her ways and begins to understand that maybe what she was doing wasn't right.