Gold digging

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Lobby card for Gold Diggers of Broadway (1929), an example of a film which helped create the American public association of chorus girls with gold diggers.

Gold digging is a type of transactional relationship[1] in which people, especially women, engage in relationships for money rather than love. When it turns into marriage, it is a type of marriage of convenience.

Peggy Hopkins Joyce was in the 1920s considered the perfect example of a gold digger,[2] with some claims existing that the term was even coined to describe her.[3]

A popular association between chorus girls and gold diggers was established in 1919 by "The Gold Diggers" play, association which was also present in the subsequent film four years later, The Gold Diggers.[4]

In 1920s and 1930s American cinema the "gold digger" was the type of femme fatale that gradually replaced the "vamp".[5] The character type would be featured, for example, in How to Marry a Millionaire, a 1953 film starring Marilyn Monroe, alongside Schatze Page and Loco Dempsey.

In the analysis of rap music it has been theorized that the "gold digger script" is one of a few prevalent sexual scripts present for young African American women.[6]

Kanye West's "Gold Digger" references gold digging.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Rosenberger pp. 60
  2. ^ Sharot p. 143
  3. ^ "Some people even claimed the term has been coined by a Hearst newspaperman to describe Peggy and her behavior." Robenblum pp. unknown
  4. ^ Sharot p. 143
  5. ^ "The gold digger came to replace the vamp as the most prominent type of femme fatale." Sharot pp. 143-144
  6. ^ Stephens (abstract)