Marilyn Monroe

Culture of the 20th Century


Marilyn Monroe (then Norma Jeane Mortenson Baker) was discovered by David Conover while he was taking pictures of beautiful women to assist in the war effort of 1944.
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Accepted by All Classes?

Marilyn Monroe was beloved by most people in the 20th Century, and she is still idolized today. The upper class did not completely accept her due to promiscuous behavior and dress.
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Does the Upper Class Identify Themselves with Marilyn?

The upper class did not identify with Marilyn Monroe because they were still trapped in the Victorian Age. The women were modest and then men were always dressed up. Marilyn was not a modest women, she was a sex symbol. Women in the upper class did not work, while Marilyn paved her own path to stardom, even establishing her own film studio.
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Racial Differences?

Marilyn Monroe was an activist for human rights, including gender equality and racial equality. One time she even convinced a club to hire her favorite artist, who was an African American, after they refused. She convinced them to do this by promising to sit front row every night at the show, drawing the press and making the club look good.

Helped Shape Culture?

Marilyn was a new kind of celebrity and new kind of woman. She became a sex symbol, being the first woman on the cover of Playboy Magazine. Unlike most celebrities back then, Marilyn shared her true self with her fans. She also was not a modest woman, paving the way for the Modern Woman.

Gender Norms

Marilyn reshaped the gender role of women. A woman's only purpose was to care for her husband, children, and house. Marilyn paved her way to fame with hard work and dedication, even divorcing her first husband, James Dougherty, to pursue acting.
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Impact Politics?

Marilyn Monroe did not impact politics at all in her lifetime, although it is rumored she had an affair with JFK. She mainly changed society with her promiscuity.


There is no evidence that there was obvious backlash against Marilyn Monroe. The upper class did not connect to her but all men desired her. She was mainly accepted in society and no one tried to stop her promiscuous behavior.

Works Cited

"About Marilyn Monroe." About Marilyn Monroe. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.

"Bus Stop." Journeysinclassicfilm. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.

"Discovery." Muckleburgh. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.

"Marilyn Monroe: Icon in the Cultural Blender." Marilyn Monroe: Icon in the Cultural

Blender. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.

"Normal Boring." Emaze. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.

" Roses." DieGoarMario. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.

"Stripes and Fur." Thebeautygypsy. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.

"Subway Dress." ArtsStew. Web. 4 Sept. 2015.