Thursday, September 26, 2013
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
My Friend posted this article on facebook. It's about this reality star's new book where she provides a type of handbook in keeping husbands happy. Based on her personal experiences with her husband Joe.
Here's an excerpt:
"Girls don't poop. Me, never have. Never will. It just doesn't happen. Or, that's what Joe thinks! We've been married for nine years, and he has never once seen or smelled my business. How have I pulled this off? I don't do it when he's around or awake. In an emergency, I have my ways of pooping so he won't hear, smell, or see. It's a challenge."
Men, I know you think your woman isn't the type who wants to be taken. But trust me, she is. Every girl wants to get her hair pulled once in a while. If your wife says "no," turn her around, and rip her clothes off. She wants to be dominated.
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Everyone was telling me their ethnicity. (From right to left: 'Jew-rican,' Puerto Rican, African-Cherokee.) When it came around to the girl on the left, one of her friends said: "She's just a white girl."
To which she responded: "I'll have you know my great grandfather eloped with a Gypsy maid!"
The HONY (Humans of New York) Facebook page is one of my favorite instant media outlets, in terms of how I'm able to get a better look into the lives of diverse New Yorkers around me in the form of stunning portraiture.
A few days ago, HONY photographed this group of friends. They each told their ethnicity to Brandon, the man behind the camera and the work of HONY. However, the three 'ethnically diverse' friends on the right labeled their friend on the left as "just white." This really bothered me, because I feel that there is such an emphasis on the idea of the minority that anyone who is white is dismissed as being "just white." I'm making the point that no ethnicity is more important than another, and we shound't dismiss one because of the color of that person's skin.
This makes me thing of scholarship essays for students in college, as well. Many organizations that give out scholarships provide for minorities, or what they believe to be the minority. When I had to apply for college, the common joke around me was that everyone wished they were Native American or Chinese, because then at least they'd get a shot at a scholarship.
What do you guys think? Is the idea of "just white" a dismissal of the cultural background of an individual? And what do you guys think about the idea of a white student with scholarships?
Here's the direct HONY like, by the way:
Lem espressed her feelings about growing up Greek in America...I understand what you mean because I am New Yorican, which basically means my parents were both born in Puerto Rico and I was born here in New York. Growing up I thought that was a term my father made up but Puerto Rican culture classes has taught me that is actually an identity. Anyway, in Junior High School, i went through a few fights with my fellow Puerto Ricans who didnt believe that i was Puerto Rican because I am very light skinned, I was "too nice" and Puerto Rican girls are usually bitches and have an attitude, which i dont. They also said i spoke too properly to be Puerto Rican, I didnt use slang.
The other thing i wanted to mention was prejudice and stereotypes can be created through a persons particular experience. For example, My nephew had a bad experience with some Mexican boys in his high school. Due to this, he goes around saying he hates Mexicans, i personally get mad every time he says it because my best friend/sorority sister is Mexican and she is amazing! I tried to express to my nephew that that is a very awful thing to say and that he should rephrase it to hating some of the boys in school or if he must use race, say he hates the Mexican boys in his school. Unfortunately, my sister told me i was wrong for teaching him this because she has taught him to speak his mind and that is that. My nephew is now 15 years old and if my sister continues to let him think this way, it may turn out to be a more disastrous situation when he is older. It hurts me to hear this from her and to allow him to continue to make these statements and assumptions about a certain race, just based off of his "one single story".
When I stepped off the 49th street subway station this ad immediately caught my eye. I knew I had to take a picture for my media moment since this ad is ridiculous and only proves that clothing doesn't need to be worn for clothing to be the thing being sold/advertised.
I can't say I even understand how this relates to clothing and not just sex. Are they trying to appeal to working women who have 9am to 5pm hours? I see what they did switching it from 9am to 9pm, but I can't say I understand the point for a clothing company to emphasize hours when you may not even be wearing clothes.
Also, is she actually getting what she wants, or is it the man who is getting what he wants?
The hip-hop community has not been shy in exploiting women in everything from songs, to music videos, to their album artwork. This particular album, Stay Trippy by Juicy J, was released last month. The album caught my eye on iTunes and I figured it was a perfect example of this exploitation of women in hip-hop and rap. The only thing "trippy" about this photograph is the colors splattered everywhere aside from that I would say the album artwork depicts a disheveled and nude woman subservient to Juicy J and she clings to his leg. However, Juicy J is completely clothed, even wearing sunglasses and has a bottle of champagne in his hand.
The image seems quite disturbing to me, more so than other media examples of women one could find in hip-hop. Many music videos or images of are women who are also nude but most likely partying with the rapper or dancing. This women however looks desperate, weak, and is completely stripped of everything.
My question would be why depict a woman like this? How does this representation of women benefit Juicy J opposed to the more common representations of women in hip-hop and rap?
Media Moment, Contradiction On The Catwalk
The usual occurs on almost every Sunday morning. Slide out of bed to be welcomed to a cup of porridge and green tea at the Kitchen table. Moments later, my sister in Italy calls and we carry on with our 6 hour conversation about all things pop culture and fabulous.
Well this particular conversation presented the discussion of fashion, which delights both of us. But this time, my sister was enraged. Being a model she took offense to Alexander Wang's Spring 2014 Ready-To-Wear Collection. Obviously, none of us our blind to the blatant racism in fashion.
Wang's fashion show, which I wasn't particularly impressed with, and I am not the picky type. We both found it interesting how the clothing was very reminiscent of Urban culture, especially when the models are strutting or stumbling to classic Hip-Hop music.
What made her so angry was he or whoever, selected only two black female models out of what, thirty women! Really? Especially as the clothing combined with the music, and on top of that, having famous Black individuals sitting in the front row. He didn't even have many Asian models, and he's Asian!
I loathe that so many fashion shows are monochromatic. Beauty exists in every shape and size but to only present woman of one color is beyond fashion Faux-pas. Get it together fashion because prejudice is tacky.
Now, the story of how I came to eventually see this video is a media-soaked tale in itself. I was on Facebook, minding my own business, not watching the Video Music Awards because awards shows in general freak me out a bit. It was then that I saw a deluge of status updates about Miley Cyrus--some defending her, others chastising her, and others still just trying to get their bearings in this brave new world. I hadn't seen this sort of rabid posting since the last presidential election.
Like a cynic, I ignored it.
Fast forward to the next day, and I check CNN.com, hoping for an update on the Syria situation, but I'm instead greeted by a giant picture of Miley Cyrus with a link to an equally large article about her butt. Fine, I said to myself, I might as well take a look. That was my first peak down the deepest and most catastrophically messed-up rabbit hole from which I'm still trying to recover.
Things haven't been the same.
I can't really say it any better than that. I think there are other things wrong with this performance (Don't even get me started on "Blurred Lines"), but this particular issue is what I really wanted to talk about.
I guess my question is, what are your thoughts on how race is portrayed in this video?
Each year, FX has done a marvelous job marketing the series, both through print and televised advertisements, but this one particular poster caught my eye unlike any other. In it, three women in bright red lipstick have their mouths opened wide as a long snake unrealistically makes its way into all three of their mouths. Without giving it much thought, it was clear that there lied phallic undertones, although it's hard to imagine that the marketing team behind this image was trying to be cryptic. The marketing team is clearly trying to make something sexual out of this, as the actions here would make anyone think of oral sex.
Sex sells, and linking your show to an image that looks very much like a sexual act is a way of capturing the attention of media consumers. I don't watch "American Horror Story," but this ad clearly captured my attention. The question I pose, a question that has often been posed before, is whether it's acceptable for images like this to be on display where children might be exposed. Is the image cryptic enough to guard children from its sexual undertones, or is it too on-the-nose? You be the judge!
This article "See Lena Dunhams offensive selfie from 2007" is a part of the project We Think Alone a piece of a larger exhibition On The Tip Of My Tongue. The exhibition is commissioned by Magasin 3 Stockholm Konsthall a privately funded exhibition venue.
"On the Tip of My Tongue is a series of events and unique projects as well as an exhibition in the usual sense. It includes artworks that point away from the site of the exhibition itself, towards other virtual or parallel existences and experiences. Its intention is to actively expand the structures that surround the usual exhibition situation, and deliberately work with the artworks included, so as to unfix or destabilize the categories of time and space. It aims to trigger situations and experiences that linger as if “just out of reach,” to generate encounters that keep growing – in thought and through conversation – long after each actual event has ended." ( http://wethinkalone.com/about/ ).
We Think Alone is a project by Miranda July. This project is a compilation of 20 emails over 20 weeks from actors Kirsten Dunst and Lena Dunham, writers Etgar Keret, basketball player Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, and Fashion Designers, sisters and founders of Rodarte Kate and Laura Mulleavy, to name a few. These emails were written prior to this project. Miranda July describes this project here stating, "How they comport themselves in email is so intimate, almost obscene — a glimpse of them from their own point of view. WE THINK ALONE has given me the excuse to read my friends’ emails and the emails of some people I wish I was friends with and for better or worse it’s changed the way I see all of them. I think I really know them now. But our inner life is not actually the same thing as our life on the computer — a quiet person might !!!! a lot. A person with a busy mind might write almost nothing. And of course while none of these emails were originally intended to be read by me (much less you*) they were all carefully selected by their authors in response to my list of email genres — so self-portraiture is quietly at work here. Privacy, the art of it, is evolving. Radical self-exposure and classically manicured discretion can both be powerful, both be elegant. And email itself is changing, none of us use it exactly the same way we did ten years ago; in another ten years we might not use it at all." ( http://wethinkalone.com/about/ )
I originally chose this article because the word "selfie" was in the title. The selfie has become the staple photo for most social networking platforms and a great pass time for someones boredom. Seriously though, a phone just came out with a button on the back of the phone for the sole purpose of the selfie. The next reason was because of Lena Dunham, actress, writer, director and creator of HBO's hit show Girls. Her show has been described as Sex and the City for the younger generation and "hipsters" alike, and has a huge following among young girls and women. I don't think her selfie was offensive. It just made me think about someone in her position and why she would choose to send that email? I thought this article touched on some major issues happening in the heavily mediated world we live in today. The selfie being a minor issue and sexting, through text, email, and snap chat a larger issue. After reading the above statement it made me think of these questions:
What should be kept private?
How would you classify private?
Do you think the selfie is an intimate portrayal of ones self or just monotonous?
- Raquel Fortunato
She created a lot more of these and even had a 'super special' which can be found here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mmqwsj27fNA.
These videos are amazing because Sarah Haskins uses comedy to expose the double-standards and absurdity of advertising targeted toward women. She has episodes that focus on chocolate, skin care, doing laundry, and even pooping (she focuses on food products that have high fiber). Her 'Super Special' even starts off with her claiming to be the perfect woman because she lives her life as advertising tells her to. Within the first five minutes you see how she jokes about the irony of the perfect woman being that the perfect woman is someone who HIDES her imperfections. The series discontinued in 2010, and I believe there is so much potential for this to continue on in some form. I am a huge fan of this because it uses the same method that shows such as The Daily Show uses: bringing comedy to topics that are not only serious, but are often overlooked.
My question is:
Is it helpful or harmful to make jokes and make light of the same advertising that reinforces the myths and stereotypes of the 'typical woman'?
Monday, September 23, 2013
Being a dancer I am a huge fan of a song with a great beat, Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke being one of them. Over the weekend I was sitting in my friends apartment and she said she had to show me something she had seen on the internet earlier in the week. She showed me this video. I thought it was awesome how this group of girls went right back at Robin Thicke and made a parody of his video and song. We talk about in class how women are degraded in so many advertisements and movies in the media today. The Blurred Lines music video is an example of just this. By these women making this parody they turned around the gender roles and probably made a lot of people uncomfotrtable.
My questions for you guys are:
Did this video make you uncomfortable? Why or why not?
Did the original Blurred Lines music video make you feel uncomfortable? Why or why not?
What lyrics in this parody song stood out to you?
Great beat, but not so great meaning
ps...above is the original Blurred Lines music video if you hadn't seen it already!
Beginning today, September 13th 2013, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova of the Russian feminist punk protest band Pussy Riot begins her hunger strike. Through reading the article I'll link at the end of this post, one can see issues behind the patriarchal, sexist and down right human right abusing captivity happening within the Mordovia camp within Russia. Tolokonnikova goes into detail about her forced slave-like labor at a sewing machine (a traditional feminine task), forbidden general hygiene upkeep and limited eating and sleeping availability. Tolokonnikova has decided to starve herself for change. I hope we can all agree that change is certainly needed.
Is it possible to reclaim makeup and other “feminine” accessories in ways that assert, rather than undermine, our identities as powerful beings?
- amanda fox-rouch
|Naughty Leopard Halloween Costume being sold at Walmart|
|Image of costume listing on Walmart website|
|Item Description for Naughty Leopard on Walmart website|
See the original posts about this: Consumerist, Feministing
First Media Moment: Miley Cyrus brings a twerking little person onstage in Las Vegas while performing 'Wrecking Ball,' slaps her behind
I saw this picture in one of those free newspapers you get at subway stations and wasn't even surprised. about this after Miley's VMA performance I think her standards of what is appropriate to do at concerts and on TV have fallen drastically. The thing is, that Miley's new single "Wrecking Ball", has an interesting and relate able topic. She sings of being in a destructive relationship which, I feel like, most of us have experienced. A relationship in which one puts in all the effort and emotions and is left standing alone. I like that message. But then her video is so incredibly unnecessarily sexual that I can't take her or her message seriously. This performance once again proves my point.
Do you guys think that in order for former Disney stars to break out of their "innocent" child they need to go to this extent? Is that really necessary? Is this what people want to see?
I hope not..
As long as these images were perceived in the way it was depicted, the plantation system was seen as a good program where everyone supposedly lived happy lives.
However, the portrayal of the black man in the media changed when slaves began to become emancipated. The media began to revert back to depicting the black person as a savage and began a program to instill national fear of the "black menace". Increasingly the once child-like Sam Bone became rapists who were in pursuit of White virgins as seen in Birth Of a Nation. The media set out to state that the emancipation of slavery was a big mistake. It justified racial violence and led the country to a racial hysteria. The mythology found in these new images of these characters told everyone that they needed to revert back to the plantation system where the 'brutes' were controlled.
I chose to post this because it is a great example of how media is used to depict a certain ideology and how easily it can transform.
Are there any changing attitudes that you have noticed in the media lately?
Sunday, September 22, 2013
However, "Massachusetts is merely one of 31 states that do not have laws precluding men from seeking custody for children born as a result of rape." In a world where statistics revealed from "Centers for Disease Control & Prevention report[ing] that one in six women in the United States have experienced an attempted rape or rape, and [where] rape has been called the most underreported violent crime in America," are women's rights not held to a higher authority as rights that apply to the general public-- or, less gender-specific, applying to all of mankind?
Should rapists be given the privilege to become a father to their unintended child?
I chose to post this because it reminded me of the rape "joke" Daniel Tosh had directed towards a female audience member at one of his comedy shows last year. When the woman retaliated to the request of a rape joke to be performed by Tosh via another member of the audience, Tosh had blatantly posed the question, "Wouldn’t it be funny if that girl got raped by like, 5 guys right now? Like right now? What if a bunch of guys just raped her..." (via the Huffington Post, 7/2012).
Are men held less accountable for their actions? Daniel Tosh remains in show business, successfully at that, even after his telling of rape jokes on more than this particular occasion referenced above. Was Tosh trying to assert his power as a man over the female "heckler?" Laughing along only condones the oppression of women with sexual violence. Because it is told in a "comedic" setting, does this allow comedians a free pass to bring humor to all serious issues? Can "rape" be less offensive (to men, but more offensive to women) when used as a punchline because it is to this day an unresolved, yet widely unpunished and seemingly forgiven crime? Do these jokes about violent, sexual assaults and going unpunished give less weight to the crime, making it seem less harmful by society? Therefore, when a woman is actually raped like that of in the Massachusetts based article, do jokes have a subconscious effect on society; letting a man who had no intention of fathering a child with the woman he assaulted and victimized now be granted a privilege of joint custody instead of being punished?
Further readings: Here is the account of the girl who was the target of the Daniel Tosh gang rape "joke."
Saturday, September 21, 2013
While I do not watch the pageant when I heard that, Nina Davuluri, an Indian-American won I was pleasantly surprised because the "Miss America" stereotypical image is basically a thin, tall, "white" girl with blonde hair and blue eyes. The feeling didn't last very long however, beacause the next day I read on Buzzfeed the various reactions that were tweeted about the pageant. I was shocked to read very racist comments ranging from misindentifying her as an "Arab" to saying that Miss America is for Americans and apparently that is only the white race. I became interested with the history of the pageant and found out that till the 70's non-white contestants were not even allowed to compete and since then there have still only been a few winners of African American descent. Growing up in history class one thing that was always emphasized was that America is a "melting pot" and people of all religions and races are accepted. We have all assimilted with each other and our respective cultures but I wonder if maybe the definiton of beauty is still not diverse? Is beauty still essentially "white"?
Friday, September 20, 2013
This is a video of Lily Myers performing her poem "Shrinking Woman," in which she talks about how her family has shaped her role as a woman in society, and how gender roles have impacted her own identity.
After reading "Inventing the Cosmo Girl," and Jean Kilbournes article "The More You Subtract The More You Add," I recalled this recitation of Lily Myers poem, "Shrinking Woman." While at the surface, you could interpret this poem simply as a description of her mothers struggle an eating disorder and how gender roles have shaped her identity, I think Myers has much more to say about how women are indeed reserving their own power in society. She talks about not feeling entitled to food, how eating disorders and negative view of food seem genetic, and all as a result of culture and family that surround her. The difference between herself and her brother is most stark, and shows how different things are expecting of different genders. While men are taught to grow, woman are taught to absorb and feel smaller.
Even though this isn't necessarily an example of mainstream media, I think it speaks volumes to why media has grown such different approaches between displaying men and women. Did any part of this video make you recall things that Kilbourne talked about? Think about culture as reflected and reinforced by advertising, and how this can lead to a false self or split identity. What does it mean to be feminine? Part of me thinks that, unfortunately some of the things Myers describes in her poem are shaping femininity today (Silence, constant apologizing, feeling small and reserved). Also, Myers discusses how her family has shaped her role as a woman in the world, but do you think that advertising and pop culture are indirectly shaping her identity as well?
"Just as she is entering womanhood, eager to spread her wings, to become active, empowered, independent - the culture moves in to her down to size."
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
We have fallen into a never-ending cycle: not even the 'role model' that the entertainment business creates are able to keep up with the expectations that they demand. Consequentially, celebrities are forced to hide from the public eye. As a result, the media creates even more pressure for renown people to either obtain a perfect shape or live through the shame of having a normal post-pregnancy body.
All of this happens while consumer women absorb the idea of pregnancy as equivalent to a 'Tortured' life. We have transitioned to a society in which having a family is actually handcuffs to a woman, and only single, child-freed women can be hot, glamorous, and happy. Sure women have the right to determine whether motherhood is the right choice for them and have a myriad of valid reasons to decide against it. The question is how deep does the representation of pregnancy and motherhood in the media influenced their decision.
Tuesday, September 17, 2013
We're bikini kill and we want revolution
I got a proposition
Goes something like this:
Dare ya to
Do what you want
Dare ya to
Be who you will
Dare ya to
Cry right outloud
You get so emotional baby
Double dare ya, double dare ya, double dare ya
Girl fuckin friend
I double dare ya
I triple dare ya
Double triple fuckin
Double fuckin dare ya
Don't you talk out of line
Dont go speaking out of your turn
Gotta listen to what the man says
Time to make his stomach burn
Burn, burn, burn, burn
(double dare ya)
Youre a big girl now
Youve got no reason
Not to fight
Youve got to know
What they are
'fore you can stand up
For your rights
You have them, you know.