Binary Oppositions in Neil Jordan’s Film “the Crying Game”

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Binary Oppositions in Neil Jordan’s film “The Crying Game” The Crying Game is a British psychological drama film written and directed by Neil Jordan in 1992. It was a huge popular and critical success. This success was due not only to artful representations of IRA characters, but even more to a strongly promoted truth about transvestite identity of one of the main characters. The film’s popularity extended well beyond Ireland and Britain to the United States because of the essential questions about sexual identities, the rights of homosexuals in the military, and so forth. The Crying Game manipulates several binary oppositions. The first one, which is so obvious, is male/female. Of course we all know that by nature people’s identities are determined by genitals. In this way, man should find a sexual interest in women and vice versa. But in film we see the opposite situation, which leads us to another binary opposition – sex/gender. Sex determined biologically, while gender is a psychological concept which refers to culturally acquired sexual identity. "When the constructed status of gender is theorized as radically independent of sex, gender itself becomes a free-floating artifice, with the consequence that man and masculine might just as easily signify a female body as a male one, and woman and feminine a male body as easily as a female one." (Butler, 1990, p.6) We can look to two different identities – Dil and Jude. The first time we see Dil in the film, her make-up, costume and behaviors conform to the female stereotypes. Her performance of femininity, way of singing and dancing shows that she is simply a woman, while she even gives Fergus and the male audience a visual pleasure. Jude acts like a man and she clearly has more masculine character. The act when she changes her clothes and hair in order to change her identity shows that femininity can be
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