Date of Award
Master of Science (MS)
School of Communication
This thesis examines gender performance and its relation to power in the television series Once Upon a Time (OUAT). On the surface, OUAT is a television show that constantly challenges the culturally-ingrained gender norms often found in fairy tales, as it creates new storylines for traditional fairy tales. This warrants a deeper examination of the series to understand if and how it is subverting these typical gender norms. To fully understand how gender operates in OUAT, I examined how gender affects and is affected by hegemony in the show and how this relates to our cultural understanding of gender and power. Using the narrative paradigm as a lens, I examined two character arcs for six different characters to determine the relationship between power and gender in the series. I found that OUAT actually reinforces hegemonic gender norms through regulation of appearance, traits and skills, and unequal distribution of power.
Mahler, Mackenzie, ""But She's Snow White, She Wouldn't Hurt Anybody": A Critical Analysis of Gender and Power in Once Upon a Time" (2017). Theses and Dissertations. 763.