Representing the Invisible? An Intersectional Analysis of Incarcerated Women in Netflix's Orange is the New Black

dc.contributor.authorGesualdo, Jamie
dc.description.abstractCriminalized women are becoming more prominent in the prison show genre, outlining the need to examine the possible troublesome portrayals of this often invisible population. This thesis uses intersectionality to conduct a qualitative content analysis to explore themes of race, class, gender, and sexuality in relation to woman characters within the popular series Orange is the New Black (OITNB). It is found that OITNB is a departure from most mass media depictions of criminalized women in the sense that it reflects many of the racial demographic realities of woman penal institutions, while often representing minorities in complex, rather than reductionist manners. OITNB addresses issues associated with class structure and inequalities to shed light upon the reality of socioeconomic injustices of the incarcerated to its viewers. OITNB also raises questions on hegemonic gendered presentations through displaying atypical gender identities and roles, especially with respect to beautification, motherhood and friendships. Finally, OITNB offers an original approach in representing the sexuality of the women by depicting various sexual identities. Through analyzing these characters and themes, this thesis concludes that, although problematic portrayals of incarcerated women are present in the show, OITNB displays a departure from past displays of the incarcerated in Anglophone media, showing that film and television are able to portray this population in a humanized, yet entertaining manner.
dc.publisherUniversité d'Ottawa / University of Ottawa
dc.titleRepresenting the Invisible? An Intersectional Analysis of Incarcerated Women in Netflix's Orange is the New Black
dc.contributor.supervisorPiché, Justin Robert Joseph sociales / Social Sciences
uottawa.departmentCriminologie / Criminology
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -