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Playing With: Gender-Restricted Ability
Basic Trope: You can only use a particular skill if you are a particular gender.
  • Straight: Alice can cast healing magic. Bob can't.
  • Exaggerated: Alice can cast ALL forms of magic. Bob can't even learn one.
  • Downplayed: Women are naturally attuned to magic, and can use it almost intuitively. Men can use it, but must study how it works for years to have even a fraction of the power.
  • Justified: Magical power was granted to humanity by a Goddess who Does Not Like Men.
  • Inverted:
  • Subverted: Bob is the youngest of seven brothers, and when his own seventh son, Christopher, is born, he turns out to have magical power, an ancient myth few people believed.
  • Double Subverted: ...But Christopher struggles to gain access to his power, and none of the experts knows how magic works for men.
  • Parodied: The women hide away in midnight cult meetings to practice magic in secret, while as far as they know their husbands keep occupied by going off to their Brotherhood of Funny Hats. The men, meanwhile, spend their time at the Brotherhood practising secret arcane rituals, while as far as they know their wives are off doing some kind of yoga thing.
  • Zig Zagged: Magic is first introduced as being female-specific, but when Alice goes out in the world, she discovers that her tribe simply tie magical initiation into their Women's Mysteries, and other civilisations only train men in magic, or train both men and women equally, or train them in different techniques; some restrict magic based on a Fantastic Caste System rather than gender, or only teach those who show a certain aptitude early in life. One thing is constant, though: everyone thinks their method is the only proper one.
  • Averted: Both sexes can use magic equally.
  • Enforced: It's a book for girls in the 'boys are icky' stage of life, which wants to justify the Improbably Female Cast in its Extranormal Institute.
  • Lampshaded: Alice taunts Bob for being able to make with his hands only inferior replicas of the things she can conjure up out of thin air.
  • Invoked: A witch casts a spell such that men cannot learn them.
  • Exploited: Women use their special abilities to assert their dominance over men and later enact a male gendercide.
  • Defied: A sympathetic witch fixes the magic system so that men can learn it as well.
  • Discussed: "If only I could learn magic too, I'd show up that bitch."
  • Conversed: "Seriously, why is magic so sexist?"
  • Implied: Alice, Florence, and Harriet can produce fire simply by clapping their hands, while Bob, Eric, and George personally have to bring about/wait for the natural confluence of heat, oxygen, fuel, and dry air to do so.
  • Deconstructed: The gender exclusivity leaves the other as exclusively second-class citizens — they just can't compete with magic.
  • Reconstructed: However the other gender takes up the mundane tasks that can't be done with magic. They have more time for those sorts of things due to not spending time learning magic.
  • Played For Laughs: The effects of gendered magic are used for crude jokes. Wizards take great pride in the size of their staffs. Meanwhile, once a month, witches have their magic turn purely destructive.

Back to Gender-Restricted Ability, but only if you're male.

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