this ain’t livin’: Feminism and Veronica Mars
I recently re-watched Veronica Mars, and happened to mention that I was doing so to Anna, and she said something along the lines of “all I learned from Veronica Mars was feminists who fake rapes.” Which, to be fair, cuts at a very serious problem I have with the show: The depiction of feminists and feminism.
Sociological Images: Are the New Disney Princesses Feminist?
One of the compliments aimed at the new Disney movie, The Princess and the Frog, is that the heroine isn’t just a pretty face, but in fact an entrepreneur who wants to open her own restaurant and is uninterested in catching a man. This observation was made to me, for example, when I was interviewed for a story by CNN reporter Breenana Hare, who suggested that this new princess was making a break with the old princesses in more than one way.
Booze. Tv. Food.: A SLAT Drinking Game
I have had a wicked cold the past week or so, which has prevented me from one of life’s greatest joys: pairing booze with Secret Life of the American Teenager. So in lieu of actually boozing along to this week’s episode, I’ll just have to fantasize about it. But feel free to take my suggestions, and if you live through the experience, well, mazel, your liver is impressive.
The Sexist: The Year in Consent
This was the year of the armchair rape analyst (ARA). If you’ve never run into such a person, here’s a job description: While men across the globe generate allegations of rape, ARAs are charged with casually dismissing the problem from the comfort of their living rooms. They sit back, stroke the chin, and plant gray where black and white work just fine.
Feministing: Avatar: Count the “isms”
Cameron’s movie does appear to be a white guilt fantasy, and as self-proclaimed “King of the World,” (referring to Pandora, the Na’vi homeland), he is responsible for at least some of the problematic undertones. And precisely because it was a lifetime dream of his to write and produce Avatar, the superiority of humans to the indigenous characters, exotic indigenous bodies, and “salvation” from disability within the movie are unsurprising given that he first dreamed of Pandora five decades ago.
this ain’t livin’: Whedon’s Brunettes
Can we discuss, for a moment, Joss Whedon’s obsession with disturbed brunettes who wander around barefoot? It really does bear examining, because various permutations of the exact same character show up again and again in his work. And I think that tells us something about Joss, that he can’t seem to produce a creative work without this character. He inserts her again and again, setting up situations in which she can be saved, but in the end, she’s often doomed despite the best efforts of the other (usually male) characters.
Bitch Blogs: The Decade in Feminist Pop Culture
No matter what those time/date sticklers who don’t think it’s over ‘til 2011 believe, according to us, tomorrow marks the end of the ‘00s. And though we’d hate to say “Good riddance” to the decade that brought us a bunch of kickass feminist blogs, a bevy of thought-provoking books, and a multitude of female-focused movies, coming up with a list of positive feminist moments in ’00s pop culture was no easy task. As it turns out, there were a lot more not-so-feminist moments this decade than feminist ones. (Too bad we’d already decided we wanted to keep the list positive – We’re starting our New Year’s resolutions early this year.)
Professor What If?: What if Disney’s princess-of-color weren’t so green? (A review of The Princess and the Frog)
After 96 minutes of enjoyable animation and some good music, I would say I was pleased with parts of the film, dismayed by others. What irked me the most was that Tiana, the first ever Disney WOC protagonist, was a FROG for the majority of the film. Her turn to GREEN was especially disappointing as I was enjoying viewing a smart, sassy, capable black woman helming a Disney script.
Happy Sunday! I hope everyone had a good Halloween here in the U.S. and Canada. I enjoyed handing out candy and seeing all of the costumes that people come up with. At work yesterday we were allowed to dress up and little kids could dress up and we would give them a “treat” (i.e. a bookmark). As much as I don’t want kids (right now or possibly ever), I do want to be able to dress one up in a cute little costume for Halloween…but then have no further responsibility for those children. I just want to dress them up. I know, that sounds weird.
The picture on the left came from this week’s Post Secret.
Anyways, here are some of my favorite posts of the past couple days. Don’t forget to leave links that what you have been writing and reading!
Whip It: Ripley’s Pick [Bitch Flicks] – a guest post review of the movie Whip It focusing on the body image message that the movie sends.
Princess and Privilege by Elena Perez [Women & Hollywood] – a guest post about the new Disney movie The Princess and the Frog and the representation of the first black Disney princess.
Another Disappointment from Barbara Ehrenreich: A Review of “Bright-Sided” Part 1 and Part 2 [Clarissa's Blog]
Ableist Word Profile: I Can Feel Your Pain! [FWD/Forward] – I love this series because it is so informative and some of the words they profile (like this phrase) are some that I never even thought of before.
Happy Thursday everyone! You wouldn’t know it by looking at this blog, but I have actually had a pretty productive last three days, so that makes me pretty happy, even if I’m not where I would like to be with these grad school applications. Here are some of my favorite posts from the past couple days. Don’t forget to leave links that what you have been writing and reading in the comments!
Disney characters: not great role models [Equal Writes] – is this a surprise to anyone? What I like about this post is that it also looks at the examples that the male characters are setting as well as the female characters.
Privilege conceals itself from those who possess it: of feminist epistemology, marriage, and “standpoint theory.” [Hugo Schwyzer] – this is just a great post, you should read it.
Disability and Loss [Womanist Musings] – Renee looks at how her disability has created some senses of loss in her life.
Violence Against Women and Girls Surges on TV [Women & Hollywood] – there is an alarming rate of the depicition of violence against women on television lately…what does this mean for our society?
I was driving to work on Wednesday when I heard the djs (one male, one female) on the radio talking about the recent purchase of Marvel by Disney. The guy was very upset about teh purchase because he loves Marvel’s creations and didn’t see Disney as matching up with what Marvel does. The woman called him out on this and said something along the lines of “you just don’t like it because Disney is for girls and Marvel is for boys.” I do wish that this point would have been discussed a little further but I guess I can’t expect much from little snip-its on a morning radio show on a pop station. But I was glad to hear that kind of brief analysis on the show.
Disney is known for making movies about princesses. Marvel is known for making movies about superheroes. Stereotypically, you would associate Disney with girls and Marvel with boys, if you look at it just on the surface. Boys shouldn’t aspire to be princesses and girls shouldn’t go too out of their prescribed social status and aspire to be superheroes.
I think Marvel might actually bring some good things to Disney. As much as I love some classic Disney movies, I have been turned off of the company ever since I actually started analyzing their movies. Not to mention the fact that they own the world. Marvel definitely isn’t perfect either. But I think that if they meld together, they could strike a good balance. Or they could just prove to continue to reinforce gender norms. Only time will tell I guess.
There’s no denying it. Americans (especially young girls…who then grow into women) are obsessed with princesses. Much of this can be attributed Disney for making these princess characters into role models for young girls.
There are many things wrong with the idolization of these princess characters. For gender norms to the promise of a happily ever after to their “perfect” lives…and everything in between. Young girls grow up thinking this is how women are supposed to act if they want to reach their happily ever after, which further hurts women by confining them to very specific gender norms.
The other day, I came across this photo project/series titled “Fallen Princesses” by Dina Goldstein (you have to click on “Fallen Princesses on the left). I was really struck by this photo series for its goal to show the princesses in “real life” and not in their idolized settings.
In a JPG Magazine story, Goldstein describes the series as placing…
…Fairy Tale characters in modern day scenarios. In all of the images the Princess is placed in an environment that articulates her conflict. The ‘…happily ever after’ is replaced with a realistic outcome and addresses current issues.
I think that this photo series does a great job at showing how unrealistic these Disney princess really are by placing them in “real life” situations that are relevant to today’s society.
This picture of Jasmine might be my favorite. I like the placement of her in the army as a strong woman. It’s also just a visually interesting picture.
As of right now, there are 10 pictures in the series with 2 more to shoot. The series will go on exhibit October 15, 2009.
You can read a little more about the series here.