Cross-Dressing and Border Crossing in William Shakespeare's as You Like it: The Paradox of Female Identity

INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF EDUCATION & PHILOLOGY, vol. 3, no. 2, Dec. 2022, pp. 6–18, https://www.ibu.edu.mk/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/IJEP-JOURNAL-VOLUME-3-ISSUE-2_2022-1-1.pdf.

15 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2023

See all articles by Mourad Romdhani

Mourad Romdhani

University of Sousse

Zied Ben Amor

University of Sousse; University of Sousse - English Language Department

Date Written: December 28, 2022

Abstract

In William Shakespeare’s As You Like It (1623/1994), cross-dressing is used not only as a theatrical tool to fill in a gap resulting from female physical absence on the Elizabethan stage; it also serves as a symbolic act that opens new perspectives and raises questions about socio-cultural issues related to gender roles and gender performance. This research follows the development of the cross-dressed Rosalind, a female character played by a man and disguised as a man. The study equally considers the question of female agency and power through the female character’s act of disguise. It attempts to show whether Rosalind manages or fails to acquire a self-sufficient identity through her physical transvestism. The scrutiny of cross-dressing as a metatheatrical device enhances the problematization of the matter of gender performance in the play.

Keywords: cross-dressing, identity, femininity, resilience, submissiveness, metatheatre

Suggested Citation

Romdhani, Mourad and Ben Amor, Zied, Cross-Dressing and Border Crossing in William Shakespeare's as You Like it: The Paradox of Female Identity (December 28, 2022). INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF EDUCATION & PHILOLOGY, vol. 3, no. 2, Dec. 2022, pp. 6–18, https://www.ibu.edu.mk/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/IJEP-JOURNAL-VOLUME-3-ISSUE-2_2022-1-1.pdf., Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4316605

Mourad Romdhani

University of Sousse

University of Sousse - English Language Department ( email )

Sousse
Tunisia

HOME PAGE: http://scholar.google.fr/citations?user=y55ZoskAAAAJ&hl=fr

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