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The Malleability of Gender Identity in Shakespeare

By Bechir Saoudi, PhD, English Literature.

Gender identity in Shakespeare's England was taken as a rigorous, unbending and conclusive
concern. Masculinity was closely related to bodily stamina, resolve and audacity, while feminine
traits involved physical beauty, abstinence, submission and subservience. The pattern of gender
roles which conceived of men as the patronizing active sex and women as the humble passive
opposite helped bolster male authority and control. Shakespeare and his contemporaries often
used the theatre as a means of challenging the obduracy of gender identity. They often wrote
plays that gave prominence to female characters who did not conform to the hierarchical
representation of their time. Gender roles were investigated on stage, and the domain of each
sex was made more flexible and permutable. The present paper lays the emphasis on the
effects of gender identity resilience in Shakespeare's plays.


Dear Bechir,

We are pleased to inform you that your abstract has been accepted.

Kindly be informed that registration for our upcoming conference on

The Poetics and Politics of Identity is now open. Please (1) complete

the registration form and (2) attach a copy of the money transfer proof

and return them by e-mail to: no later than 31

August 2017.

Should you have further queries, please feel free to email us.
Looking forward to meeting you in Hammamet.

On behalf of the Organising Committee,

Dr. Jawhar Ahmed Dhouib

University of Gabes,