Gender Roles In Who's Afraid Of Virginia Woolf

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Gender Roles in Edward Albee´s "Who´s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?"

During the period of 1960’s, a happy American family was represented by the conservative president, Dwight Eisenhower, and the television shows like Leave it to Beaver and Father Knows Best had a huge influence on the individuals of that time. These social norms, which usually depicted the life of a perfect couple, and a happy housewife, have actually masked the reality that has been deeply hidden behind the social exterior. Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf is a drama piece that obviously reflects the underlying truth of a happy American family, and shatters the myths that prevailed in that conservative period.

George and Martha are the perfect example of a couple that break the rules, and play a game of power, instead of following the social pattern of good behavior.
In this game of power in which Martha is the leader, she manifests using an unusual behavior for a happy housewife, she shouts, orders and humiliates her husband, and constantly accuses him of knowing nothing. Is she acting according to the socially recognized role of a man, showing a certain lack of femininity? Is she changing her gender properties acting like a man? Is George actually the submissive husband he appears to be? Is he also changing his masculinity by applying certain gender patterns that are specific for women? Martha’s behavior displays a high amount of vulgarity and aggressiveness. She constantly denigrates George telling him,
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