The phallic girl goes to Italy: Amanda Knox, post-feminism and phallicism between the national and international spheres

Ella Fegitz*

*Corresponding author for this work

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Abstract

The article takes as its subject the trials of Amanda Knox, Raffaele Sollecito and Rudy Guede for the murder of the English student Meredith Kercher in Perugia on 2 November 2007. Through a Foucauldian discourse analysis, the article explores the discursive strategies that are employed – through the interplay of the media and the legal system – to reinsert the disruptive figure of ‘the woman who kills’ within normative and sanctioned forms of femininity and female sexuality. Furthermore, the analysis shows how the Knox case is central for understanding Italian culture, which is characterised by an anxiety towards, and rejection of, a novel facet of young femininity in post-feminist culture: the phallic subjectivity and sexuality incarnated by Knox.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Journal of Women's Studies
Volume30
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)331-345
ISSN1350-5068
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2023

Keywords

  • Amanda Knox
  • Berlusconism
  • femininity
  • phallic girl
  • post-feminism
  • femme fatale
  • sexuality

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