An Analysis of Gender Identity in David Ebershoff’s the Danish Girl
RAHMAWATI, laila Riska
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The Danish Girl is a novel written by David Ebershoff, an American author, in 2000. The Danish Girl tells about the life of transgender pioneer which struggles to seek his true identity. I identify the gender identity of the main character through his characterization. Not only the characterization of Einar, there are also other characters. However, this thesis focuses on Einar‟s characterization. I use qualitative data analysis because it is aims to analyzing and explaining the meaning of the message inside the novel. Sociological approach and queer theory utilized to help this research in understanding more about transgender. The result of the research shows that Einar is a transgender, named Lili. It is analyzed through the characterization of Einar that leads this research finds the gender identity through his cross-gender identity behaviour and also his psychological suffering. Therefore, Einar insists to transform his identity becoming Lili Elbe. This research also explains pertaining to the transformation of Einar becoming a transgender. He obtains his family support until successful being a transgender. Queer theory is uses to conceive how Einar‟s gender identity is constructed by society. Acccording to Butler, gender is not following the sexual identity because sexual identity is not determinant by gender, gender is constructed by culture and society. Furthermore, the social context and author motives in the novel also discussed. The social context in the novel located in Denmark represents the society when the novel is written. I analyze the social condition in Denmark 1930‟s corresponded to gender identity issues which the society in Denmark 1930‟s accepted trans-person. Besides, to analyze the author motives I have to figure out the author‟s way of thinking towards the problem in the novel. Ebershoff delivers his motives in the novel by exploring the struggle of Einar as a transgender person who succeeded being trans-sexual and accepted by his family. He succeeded to influence his close relatives about his problem as transgender through his behavior, ideas and opinion as well from the dialogue.
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