|University of Oslo
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This thesis examines teen soap The O.C. s representation of gender and masculinity. The study employs a social constructivist view of gender, particularly inspired by Judith Butler s work. Moreover, theories on masculinity, masquerade and melodrama, feminist theory and the work of Camille Paglia also make up important theoretical groundwork which this thesis rests on. The main question I structure my thesis around is how gender and masculinity are represented in The O.C through the characters of Ryan and Seth. My approach to examining this question is through textual analysis. The analysis is divided into three main parts. One chapter explores the representation of gender and masculinity from the perspective of film history, focusing especially on how Ryan is influenced by Marlon Brando s star persona, while Seth s display of masculinity evokes Woody Allen s comic screen persona. In my second main chapter I examine their friendship from the framework of homosociality and homoeroticism, then I briefly suggest a third way of looking at their relationship, inspired by the term bro-mance . In my final chapter I analyze Ryan and Seth s look, style and fashion, pointing out how clothing plays a key element in expressing the flexibility of masculine identities.