Marilyn Monroe’s Star Canon: American Consumerism and the Semiotics of Stardom



In an age of mass consumerism, celebrity images dominate the potent force of mass production. As a prolific contemporary American writer, Joyce Carol Oates has created a large number of works with comprehensive and inclusive topics covering race, ethnicity, violence, historical events and politic. Her novel Blonde (2000), a fictional depiction of Marilyn Monroe’s life, demonstrates Monroe’s and her. Joyce Carol Oates unflinchingly unfolds the 20th century American capitalizing and consumerism penetrating world in Blonde. Monroe as a monumental cultural figure embodies the American mass consumer culture symbols. Monroe was a powerful but simplifies public image; an indicator of a particular historical and social context; and an embodiment of significant cultural debates. This article aims to decipher Monroe’s screen persona and off-screen life in resistance to conventional value, extensively reveals how Monroe embodied the contradictions inherit in the American mass consumer culture and history.



Social Identity; Consuming Celebrity Images; Semiotics of Stardom

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