Even though gender equality in the orkplace was not as advanced In the 1990s as It Is today, when It Is still far from perfect, Star Trek Voyager had a dynamic Impact on the way society perceived female roles. Although women were largely oppressed by males in the mid 90’s, Star Trek Voyager had a dynamic impact on the way society perceived female roles by offering viewers an Inside look Into a female leader who Is strong-willed, but does not, however, compromise her femininity.
Captain Janeway with her role as a captain of a starship in the Star Trek saga became a role model for young women during an age where figureheads of the ouse were usually male. “At the premiere of Star Trek: Voyager (hereafter Voyager) she was touted as a role model for females, an example of a future In which there was no gender bias, in which women could achieve anything they wanted: …. she became a model for girls and young women who admired a strong, self confident woman at the helm, equally adept at navigating the intricacies of science and the complexities of leadership. (Bowring 382) Her strong will and determination Is best shown In “Equinox” season 5 with her stand off with captain Ransom of the uss Equinox after it is discovered that Ransom and his crew had been harvesting the bodies of space organisms for fuel. Feminine emotions such as rationality and sympathy are replaced with the more masculine emotions such as fury and assertiveness towards Ransom. JanewaVs actions are a parallelism to battle hardened male warriors that will stop at nothing until their enemy is vanquished. During this entire episode she showed that she was “unbound by the conventional gender stereotypes. (Dove-Viebahn 597), literally taking control at the helm. The Captain’s Gender Is not a rulebook for her personality and her leadership kills. The general misconception is that females are limited to either accepting a masculine role or a feminine role. However,Janeway successfully combines both roles allowing her to become an effective captain. Throughout the series her “motherliness” Is exemplified through her emotional response to crewmembers or other aliens in the Delta Quadrant in need of help from the IJSS Voyager. With her emphasis of home and the consoling speeches, she is portrayed as feminine.
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Her femininity is balanced out with a masculinized side which appears as “rational, calm, and ruthless” (Bowring 393) attributes. In Sl E2 she shows that she can be “ruthless” when needed: “In command school they taught us that maneuvering a starship Is a 1 OF3 punch your way through. ” (Captain laneway) Jane’s way of being strong but soft is exemplified till the end in S7E25. Knowing that many of her crew would die on the voyage home future, Admiral laneway goes back in time to save her crew from from horrible losses, which would include Seven of Nine and in a sense Tuvak.
This to many may seen as a “mother” doing anything to save her “children”. Though Jane’s way of being does not only let her see one side of it she is a captain with a tactical ind set she was determined to destroy the Borgs Trans- warp network that would deal a crippling blow to their military power. It is this balance of gentleness and aggression that allowed Captain laneway to be an effective leader, which in turn inspired many women in society to pursue Jobs and positions which they normally wouldn’t have during that time period.
An aspect that was very new in Voyager, was that Janeway was also a scientist along with chief engineer B’lanna Torres. In the 90’s and even to this day the amount of women in the science community is very miniscule as opposed to the amount of en. Science was portrayed as a masculine field because they were seen as the thinkers and the leaders with every head political figure being male at the time. But Voyager showed that women could also solve the problems that surround mankind.
Throughout the series when repairs were required Torres would be the first to respond with a scientific approach. laneways scientific aspects are best shown in S3E12 (Macrocosm) where an organism that has plagued the delta quadrant infested the ship and crew. She is left alone with the doctor to find a cure that will save millions. The two were iconic figures symbolizing what women can be in the future. All in all, Star Trek: Voyager was an awaking for women to purse leadership and science.
Captain Kathryn laneway came to light to a variety of women as a pioneer in the world of women’s rights showing that they did not have to live in the shadows of men or having to fear that they would lose their femininity if they pursued their dreams if it entails something that is stigmatized as a male role in our society. laneway was not Just a fictional character but she was also an embodiment leadership and recalcitrance for the status.