Final Project: Ocean’s 8

During these quarantine days, I enjoy spending my time relaxing and watching movies. After coming across a movie with only female main characters, I was very inspired and proud of being a woman. This film demonstrated how women can do the same tasks as men, since both genders have the same skills and intelligence levels. The movie is called Ocean’s 8 and it is lead by eight famous women who have proven themselves to be as successful as the men in their industry. These inspirational women are Sandra Bullock, Cate Blanchett, Mindy Kaling, Sarah Paulson, Awkwafina, Helena Bonham Carter, Rihanna, and Anne Hathaway. This movie shows feminism in two ways. Firstly, it is impressive to see all-female cast and secondly, this movie proves that women can do anything that men can.

Many of you might know the movie Ocean’s 13 that came out in 2007 with George Clooney (Danny Ocean) as the main character. The movie is about thirteen men who rob a casino which was looked at as a movie made by men for men to watch. The women actors saw this as an opportunity to demonstrate that they can play the same type of role in a movie. If men can rob a casino… why can’t women do the same? Sandra Bullock (Debbie Ocean) plays as the main character in Ocean’s 8 and she is supposedly Danny’s sister who wants to seek revenge for the murder of her brother. Therefore, she sets a plan and recruits seven other women to do the job with her. Debbie’s goal is to commit the largest jewel heist of the 21st century by robbing the most expensive jewels including a 150 million-dollar Cartier diamond necklace called the Toussaint. The plan takes place at the Met Gala and the women succeed.

These women proved that men and women should be equal across the globe. They overcame stereotypes such as women are too scared to commit crimes or that women lack the intelligence of plotting such a risky endeavor. This movie empowered women all around the world by showing them that eight women can receive the same attention as thirteen men. They brought forth this movie to fight for equality and prove that heists are not a traditional men’s game. Women can play the same roles as men such as being a hacker (Rihanna), a con artist (Sandra Bullock), an illegal salesperson who deals with stolen goods (Paulson), a street hustler and pickpocket (Nora Lum), etc.

This movie has represented a leap towards feminism in the acting industry where women can lead action movies or any other kind of genre. The Marketplace asked Olivia Milch, the co-writer of the movie, why they chose an all-female, all-star cast and she replied, “The hope is that we get to a place where there’s just a lot of movies being made with female protagonists and female voices” (Milch 2018).  The all-female Ghostbusters movie and Ocean’s 8 are two films among others that are beginning to really commence the talk of feminism and equality. These movies are giving voices to all female actresses and supporting them by giving them an important platform to share their stories and opinions.

The film industry plays a big role in our society as movies are very influential in the real world. Many people base expectations on movies and live their life believing that movies could become reality. Therefore, it is important to show gender equality as it can create an impact in today’s society. Movies have the power to represent how our world should see a woman’s position in society. Ocean’s 8 inspired me to not be afraid and to be proud of being a woman because we are indeed powerful, successful and inspirational.


Marketplace. “The feminism behind Ocean’s 8.” (2018).

Movie Trailer:

Blog 5: Masculinity

In the text, “Understanding Patriarchy” by bell hooks, she introduces us to way masculinity is defined through the eyes of feminists. On the other hand, Micheal Kimmel gives us the truth behind masculinity with his text “Masculinity as Homophobia”. These two articles allow us to understand the true meaning behind manhood and its impact on men and women. They also include in their texts the impact of masculinity on homophobia and the concept of sexism.

Firstly, bell hooks believes that patriarchy has ruined masculinity by bringing psychological pain to men. She thinks patriarchy has led to assaulting the male body by restricting them with a certain way of behaving and thinking. In a patriarchal society, men must always be strong and never show weakness. They are not allowed to show emotions or any sort of emotional expressive behavior. They need to be the constant providers for their families and have the duty to protect their families even if it is in violent ways. hooks explains how not all men are able to conform to those expectations and they are not the reality of how men want to be seen as. She explores this idea by sharing her childhood stories that include her brother’s non masculine behaviors. Growing up, her brother was always gentle and peaceful. He had a passive and calm behavior which was unacceptable for their parents. Her father was very disappointed and mad at the fact that he had raised such a “weak” son. The father realized that bell was developing a stronger character than her brother, therefore he beat her to put her back in her place as being nothing but a little girl. hooks’ brother did not have the liberty of redefining masculinity due to the pressure that was brought upon him from his father. On the other hand, bell hooks took the chance to share with us an anecdote to show men that they are not alone and that they can have the liberty to redefine masculinity and change its concepts to lighten the pressure on men.

Next, there is a clear link between patriarchy and sexism. bell hooks tells the story of Terrence Real’s son to demonstrate how sexism is still present in today’s world. For example, Real’s son enjoyed playing with Barbies and had a feminine persona. His brother’s friends saw this, and they gave him a look of disapproval and neglected him. Real’s son was very ashamed of himself and dropped his feminine ways of doing. He began to follow the patriarchy behaviors to feel more accepted by the other boys. Real concluded that patriarchy comes from psychological traumas and he believes that it is transmitted by the pressure of men on other men. Sexism demands that men remain emotional cripples and denies them to their full emotional well-being. It also denies their access to their full freedom of will. It damages men psychologically and sometimes makes them mentally unstable.

Secondly, Kimmel defines masculinity by suggesting that men fear being viewed as gay, therefore they act a certain way to stay “manly”. He believes that men fear being ridiculed and are afraid as being viewed as a “fag”. Every man wants to be a real man that is tough and powerful. He really put an accent on the fact that all men want to feel powerful and if they are being weak, they will think they are complete failures. He suggests that all men are afraid of the men around them and that they are afraid of being unmasked. No man wants to wear his heart on his sleeve or show that he has emotions because this will make them look weak which will lead everyone to believe that they are sissies. Men need to behave and do certain things to demonstrate their masculinity and if they don’t, they will be seen as having a feminine persona and being untough. Feminists believe that men have too much power, however most of these men do not feel power at all and do not think they have any. Men have many insecurities because of masculinity and wanting to be apart of the manhood. Throughout the article, Kimmel speaks about homophobia and how men fear it. They fear being shamed for unmanly behavior. This comes from the insecurities that all men possess. Kimmel concludes that men need to overcome the belief of being “too feminine” to begin redefining masculinity.

Blog 4: International Women’s Week

The presentation that I attended was called, “Art in Response to Backlash”: a presentation by Sonya Stefan. Sonya Stefan is a media artist that aims to create work using real-time electronic glitchery and she is very interested in the deterioration of objects. She uses damaged materials and transforms them into contemporary new media works. Sonya Stefan is the curator at Lux Magna, Pop Montreal and Suoni Per II Popolo. She is the cofounder of La Lumiere Collective and Ibrida Pluri. She is full of adventures and is a very hard worker. Apart from collaborating with many artists, Stefan is a professional dancer and she performs with Animals of Distinction, Estelle Clareton, The Toronto Dance Theatre, etc. She also enjoys filmmaking and has proven to be a very successful filmmaker. While filming, she focuses on single framed works, insolation, music and DIY (Do it yourself) films.

The key message that Sonya Stefan conveyed during her presentation is to have courage to not be afraid to push the boundaries and to think outside the box. She taught us that weird is cool and that normal is boring. She also spoke to us about collaboration and how important it is to work with people that can teach you new things and help you explore new concepts. She enjoys collaborating with musicians because she knows little about music and they teach her how to mix music with filmmaking. She also loves including children in her events and festivals because she loves when families are brought together. She has children of her own and realized that they were not able to attend art events, therefore she began creating events that would allow parents to bring their kids along with them.

During the presentation many students asked her questions about her determination and courage. We were all very inspired by her hard work and dedication. I would recommend this presentation to others because of the will power that was shown through the eyes of Sonya Stefan. She has proven that anything is possible and that if you set the right goals, you will be able to achieve them and leave a print on the world. She has participated in so many events and has changed the lives of many people including filmmakers, musicians and families. Before this event, I did not know much about filmmaking or any of the events that Sonya Stefan spoke about during her presentation. She opened my eyes to many things that are happening here in my own city that I did not even know about. She made me think about the different activities that are currently going on that can help others find their right path. Sonya Stefan is a very powerful woman that has paved the way for many artists and it is thanks to people like her that the art industry continues to grow and leave a mark on our society.

Blog 4: Emma Thompson

The inspirational women that I have chosen to present is Emma Thompson, also known as Nanny McPhee. Emma Thompson was born April 15 in 1959 in London, England. Aside from being a very successful actress, she has also shown herself to be a very engaged activist. Emma Thompson is very dedicated to helping humanity and making the world a better place. Thompson is a longtime environmental supporter of Greenpeace UK and the Food Foundation. She is also the president of the Helen Bamber Foundation, which provides specialized care for refugees who have experienced extreme cruelty, such as torture and human trafficking. She has also spent many years campaigning for immigrants’ rights.

The way I define someone inspirational is a person who sets an example for others and encourages others to do what they do by leading them and showing them that it is possible to make a difference. This leads to people looking up to the person and being inspired by them to conquer any obstacle they are facing. I believe that Emma Thompson is an inspiration because of how she has demonstrated how much of an impact one individual can have in our world. The important similarity between Emma Thompson and I is the strive to make the world a better place. I want to help people around me and save the planet just as her. I would like to make an impact and fight for what is right just as she is doing. However, the important difference between us is that she has a bigger platform than I do, and she is more courageous. I continue to look up to her and hopefully one day I will work up enough courage to make a difference.

Emma Thompson joined the Extinction Rebellion (XR) group to protest in a non-violent mass protest. Thousands of people blocked the city’s major traffic routes. This gathering was put in place by the grassroots movement and they have three main goals: to get governments to declare a “climate emergency;” to eliminate net greenhouse gas emissions by 2025; and to have citizens’ assemblies lead the government on climate and ecological justice. She also wrote a letter directing the State on climate change and what the government should be doing to help the environment.



Blog 3: Indigenous Gender Roles

According to the text, “Gender and Cultural Diversity in the Early Contact Period” gender in Indigenous cultures was very equal in comparison to the Western World. Men were usually in charge of hunting large game and warfare. On the other hand, women still played an important role by trapping animals and fishing. They prepared the food every night and made clothing for their family. They made sure their families had shelter and took care of the kids. The major leaders were usually men, however women’s opinions and perspectives were heard and respected on important decisions. In some cases, such as the clans along the Great Lakes, the husband lived with the wife’s family and contributed to it by giving them the meat that he would catch hunting during the day. Once the animals were caught; the women of the longhouses would decide how the meat would be split and prepared. In other clans, women were symbolic figures in religious ceremonies, and they would perform the Sun Dance. Another aspect that is brought to the table throughout the paper is gender relations. For example, gender relations were very important for the Innuits of northern Quebec. Bonds came together during winter and would intermarry to forge stronger partnerships which would lead to cooperation and mutual support. These bonds depended on gender relations and were only possible through those marriages. Gender relations were also important during New France. The French civil law was a powerful way of bearing o gender relations. They created les Filles du Roi which was a system that allowed unwanted women in France to move to New France and marry the men living in the New World.

There were similarities between the Indigenous people gender roles and the Western World gender roles. Just as the Natives, women in New France were not as important as men, however they did play important roles in society. For example, nuns were very important because of their major role in the development of education, social services, medicine and many more. I mentioned before how Indigenous men were masters, however the women’s opinions were heard. It was the same case in the Western World, however only for women of high rank. High class women had informal political power which meant they gave their advice on a situation to their husband who was the leader. Women had administrative and estate duties, however had no leader power. To continue, there were many differences between the Indigenous people and the Western people. Women in Aboriginal societies had more status and authority than most European counterparts. The Western World follows a patrilineal and patriarchal lifestyle which is very different from Indigenous beliefs. Also, it was okay for men to have more than one wife which was against religion for Europeans. Another aspect that shocked the Western people was the fact that sex before marriage was normal for the Natives and they could choose their own spouse.

Aspects that struck me the most were in the section of the Indigenous people who lived along the Great Lakes. They adopted political systems to their societies and had a confederacy council made up of only men. No female took part in this political system; however, the men were chosen by senior women. What impressed me was the fact that women were in charge of choosing who was worthy of those high positions. Females had a considerable status and authority with matrilineal societies which meant that the descent was traced by female line. Also, women had a high power in the longhouses because of their vital role in life which was the capability of reproducing. Another aspect that surprised me was how important buffalos were for the people living in the Interior Plains. Men oversaw hunting the large game and warfare. On the other hand, women oversaw buffalo economy and traditional healing.

Blog 2: Women’s Place in Italy

This past summer, I took the most memorable trip of my life. I had the opportunity to go visit the village where my grandfather grew up during his childhood. He spent most of his life in a small town named Falascoso in Abbruzzo. During my stay, I attended a festival where I watched a play about women abuse in the South of Italy. Therefore, I will be writing a blog about women abuse in Italy and how the female gender is perceived in the Northern part of Italy compared to the Southern part. I would like to educate others and myself on this situation and bring awareness to everyone on the gender inequality that is still occurring around in Italy and around the world.

To begin, feminism has not reached Italy as it has in North America and gender discrimination is still at a high rate around the country. Statistics show that at least 6,788,000 women in Italy were victims of physical or sexual violence in 2015 and roughly 150 women a year are killed in Italy by abusive partners. (Pianigiani 2018) These two statistics are very close to the highest rates in all of Europe.  This is a big problem for women because they have minimal power and are afraid of standing up to something that has been seen as normal for decades. Also, they do not have enough power to make differences, for example, statistics show that only 14% of mayors in Italy are women and they are mainly in very small communities. (Boyarkina 2017)

There is a strong presence of inequality between both genders and discrimination in the labor force is still present in Italy. The Italian community is very traditional in their mentality and culture, historically as in other countries, women played a secondary role in society. They still believe that women should stay home and be a housewife instead of going into the labor force. This leads to women becoming very dependent on their husbands in every aspect of their life, such as, economically, socially, etc. They tend to rely on the income of their husband to keep themselves fed and sheltered. This creates a problem because the women tend to remain silent when they are physically, psychologically or sexually abused. (Boyarkina 2017) They have nowhere to go and no money to support themselves if they were to leave their husband. Also, Lella Paladino, president of Di.Re., a nationwide advocacy group that fights violence against women, stated, “When a woman tells her story, authorities rarely believe her, so in the end women stop speaking up,” (Pianigiani 2018) Therefore, women do not speak of their problems and suffer in silence which creates major depression and anxiety. The women who do speak up and try to escape are often fighting for years in Italy’s Byzantine legal system while their partners often threaten to sue them for defamation, stalk them or continue to abuse them. Women can wait up to two years to see their cases discussed in court, living in a constant fight with their exes. These cases can extend up to 10 years. (Pianigiani 2018)

To continue, statistics have shown major differences between the violence against women in the Northern part of Italy compared to the Southern part. The North of Italy has always been a richer and more prosperous region of the country. Its inhabitants tend to be more highly educated and many different industries have settled in that part of the country. These factors have decreased the old mentality in this region of Italy. However, statistics have proven that women abuse is much higher in the Southern parts of Italy where the economy and living conditions are not as evolved. In the North, women take up 50% of the labor force, however in the South, there are only 33% of women in the labor force. (Boyarkina 2017) To conclude, there have been improvements in women’s rights in the last few decades in Italy, however there is still much to do in bringing the woman’s situation to the level it deserves to be at.


Boyarkina, Iren. Violence Against Women In Italy. 2017.

Pianigiani, Gaia. For Italy’s Abused Women, a Legal Labyrinth Compounds the Wounds. 2018.

Blog 1: Feminism

To begin, feminism is considered such a powerful movement that has changed the world in countless positive ways for women. It has brought attention to the inequality that has been going on between the two sexes for generations. However, every woman has their own perspective and opinion on this movement that is inspirational for some yet controversial for others.

Firstly, Jessica Valenti and bell hooks have very interesting viewpoints concerning feminism. Valenti believes that it is a way of telling women that they do not need to follow the norms and expectations that society inherently expects them to abide to. She portrays the message that every woman is good enough and that every woman should feel good about themselves and have self-respect. According to Valenti, feminism makes life better, and it is a powerful movement that keeps changing with diversity and uniqueness. In addition, she mentions that the feminist movement comes with many stereotypes and negative biases that were created by people with opposing views to feminism. These stereotypes act as proof that feminism is still present in today’s societies across the globe. To continue, bell hooks gave her share of what feminism is. Her perspective is that it is a movement that drives to end sexism, sexist exploitation and oppression. She conveys the message that feminism breaks the male domination that has been in place for decades. In her opinion, this movement lets women find their true selves which leads them to become fully self-actualized. Once the women has accepted herself, she will have peace and the presence of possibility and everlasting opportunity. She wants everyone to be who they truly are, no matter their gender, race, religion or class. hooks states that all women have their own way of understanding feminism and that creates different types of the movement.

Secondly, it is important to recognize the similarities and differences of both of their perspectives on feminism. The different thoughts of Valenti and hooks demonstrate the diversity of feminism and how it can change depending on each individual. Valenti describes feminism as a movement that revolves around making one feel good and respected. However, hooks’ focus is on male domination and how feminism fights for the abolition of sexism. On the other hand, these two ladies do have many points in common. They both agree that feminism fights for equality between males and females (politically, socially, economically). Also, they both state that feminism results in self-actualization and self-respect. Feminism is important for these two women because they have grown tired of society’s pressure on women which results in the feeling of being inferior. They know that every girl was brought up with the mentality of something being wrong with them and feminism has the power of eliminating those negative thoughts. They find it very important to bring awareness to people about this situation and hopefully, they will get more people to change their behavior concerning this issue.

Thirdly, I see myself as a feminist, however my definition of feminism may alter from what you have previously read. According to me, feminism is a movement whose main goal is to create equality between men and women in every domain. It is a movement that shows men that women have the capacity of doing anything a man can do. Feminism instills courage and hopes to result in both genders being identical. My definition did not change from before reading these two articles to after analyzing them, however it did open my eye to some things that I did not think about before. The section of Valenti’s article that stuck with me most, was the first paragraph where she spoke about the worst names that you can call a man or a woman. The names called out for the women were very hurtful. However, the words for the men were softer and many of them were calling them girls. “The worst thing you can call a girl is a girl.” is the line that struck me and shocked me because of how truthful it is. After doing some research on both writers, I have grown more respect for them knowing that they have done so much for women. They both have written many books to bring awareness to people on the issues surrounding feminism. They have both contributed to help create the foundation concerning this situation and they inspire me to stand for what I believe is right. I consider these two ladies to be an inspiration based on what they stand for.