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Heroine Worship

9 Dec

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This past year in movies has arguably been a great one for women. From Snow White and the Huntsman, Brave, and the Hunger Games, movies introduced young brave women who aren’t afraid to kick some ass.

Not everyone’s happy about it though. Movie critic, Frank Parlato, recently quit his job because he disapproves of the roles these women are given in movies. “I don’t want to publish reviews of films where women are alpha and men are beta,” he wrote. “Where women are heroes and villains and men are just lesser versions or shadows of females.”

One movie he used as an example was Snow White and the Huntsman, which showed Snow White overcoming vulnerability, donning armor, and charging into war against the evil queen. This, Parlato claims, is “a Hollywood agenda of glorifying degenerate power women and promoting as natural the weakling, hyena-like men, cum eunuchs.”

Why does his opinion matter? According to an article from the New York Times, it matters because Hollywood is known for over-sexualizing and degrading women, and it’s surprising that in this day and age some positive portrayal of strong women in movies can be so threatening.

Hollywood is arguably one of the most sexist industies, argues the article. Smart well-rounded characters, like Hermione Granger, are only the sidekicks. Women aren’t heroes unless it’s in a ‘chick-flick’ which, of course, men would not want to see anyway. Who want’s to see a woman be the hero?

Even in comedies women aren’t funny, men are. Katherine Hiegl made Hollywood universally angry when she called Judd Apatow’s Knocked Up, sexist. She argued that the movie is “a little sexist. It paints the women as shrews, as humorless and uptight, and it paints the men as lovable, goofy, fun-loving guys. … I had a hard time with it, on some days. I’m playing such a bitch; why is she being such a killjoy?”

Hiegl was right, frankly, it doen’t matter how deeply immature a guy is, hot girls are gonna sleep with them anyway. And those girls are gonna be bitches and the guys are gonna be goofy and adorable. If the girl is funny, it’s because she’s dumb. That’s how comedy’s framed.

Any female heroes stereotypically are obsessed with their love lives. The chick-flick is basically a love lusting woman looking for a perfect man. Movies featuring heroines like Katniss Everdeen should be a breath of fresh air, proving that a female hero can focus on other things beyond her love life.

Hollywood, luckily, is beginning to move past gender roles for heroines. Supporting movies like the Hunger Games can make this progress more permanent. I hope we see a lot more Katniss Everdeen types of heroines in the future!!!

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Royal Baby: Forever Tied to Tragedy

9 Dec

The unfortunate events of the suicide of Kate Middleton’s nurse, has left the two radio show host to be reevaluated themselves for psychological reasons. Both host have gone incognito and have isolated themselves from work, the media, and even family. According to Mel Greig’s family and friends, they have no clue as to where she is. It’s sad that Kate and her family, especially her unborn child now will be forever tied to such craziness. It is too early in the investigation to show whether or not the radio station host are solely to blame for this tragedy but according to Time in Scrutiny Builds at Radio Station that Prank Called London Hospital, the overwhelming national publicity has shown their dislike for the two hosts. Like mentioned before it is a little to early to place blame. We don’t really know this woman’s state of mind prior and after the incident. To solely blame these too are just absurd. The media overall needs to take responsiblity of how they go about to acquire information. The lengths some will take to get the scoop is frightening. This unfortunate event, I hate to say, is an eye opener, example and a warning to all. We should be cautious in the way we report, investigate etc to get the top news. We never know people’s mental state.

Drama is So Overated

9 Dec

The story over LeAnn Rimes is getting old. I’m ranting because the more I hear about this woman and her infidelity story that was how many years ago? the more I’m like can we just squash it already! Yes, we are sadden by the actions that had taken place, yet so tired of hearing about it. I totally understand Eddie’s ex wife’s reason to get back at LeAnn but I feel she should have done that years ago when the door was wide open for some sort of retaliation. Now its like your just hungry for attention. Yeah your man cheated, okay say something about it then be done with it. Move on. Life is too short to be hampering about it. Leave the trashy talk and pointless accusations at home. Stop flooding tabloids and the media about this other woman and get a NEW life.  Then you have LeAnn, who in some ways is feeling the effects of her decisions. Though you can only play the damsel in distress for soo long. Its kind of along the lines of you reap what you sow. I do feel on the other hand the way she has dealt with the situation has been too publicized. Stop talking about it. If you need some type of psychological help seek it out. But retaliating against the ex is just plain messy. You clearly don’t want to be in the midst of the media like that so don’t cater to the ex’s attention, it’s clearly what she wants. I do understand the need to defend yourself, but nobody clearly cares anymore which is why she’s taking her frustrations out on you again. She shes you moving on and rebuilding your life. She needs to take a tip or two. Okay im done now. I hope im not the only one who feels this way. I dont just feel this way about this particular story, I do with all cheating scandals and their fall outs. Drama is overrated now. I credit my rant to TMZ and their recent story on LeAnn not being addicted to laxatives and not being anorexic.

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Are Women in the Media Only Portrayed As Sex Icons?

6 Dec

We’ve discussed in class on numerous occasions the differences in how men and women are portrayed in the media. This article discusses a couple of studies that point out how women are more likely to be portrayed as “sex icons” versus anything else.The article also discusses MissRepresentation and how it is good at pointing out the sexist media to women who may not have noticed.

“The media is a powerful instrument of change and change can only occur once we are able to see the type of force this tool has cast on society. It’s up to us women to use the force of media to influence positive change and correct the representation of women.”

Vogue takes on media images of women

5 Dec

 

Clicking around youtube I found a video of an interview with Tyra Banks where she addresses the spring 2012 decision Vogue made to refuse to work with models who are underage or show signs of an eating disorder. Vogue has made this decision in order to show a more positive role model for young girls and promote healthy body image for women. I think this is a brilliant idea and shows that the media does pay attention to how it affects young women. In the video she makes a good point about how when young boys see a sports figure, they do not get upset they don’t look like their idols yet young women are constantly bombarded with images and messages that we need to look a certain way. I never thought of the media in this way but do you think there is a lot less pressure on males to look a certain way over females?

Beauty. Drugs. Death.

27 Nov

Maria Susana Flores Gamez, beauty queen, was competing for Miss Mexico but her fight fell short when her body was found in the middle of a drug war. Flores Gamez was enrolled in a local college and had been modeling and completing pageants for three years. According to the Associated Press beauty queens and Mexico’s violence involving drugs is a common trend, and this is the third instance. “Miss Bala” was arrested for drug acts that were forced on her by gang members.  While in 2011 former Miss Sinaloa Laura Zuniga was arrested for suspicion of drugs and weapon infringements.

Javier Valdez is an author of book “Miss Narco” which evaluates the recent trend for young women in Mexico. Valdez says, “It is a question of privilege, power, money, but also a question of need,” said Valdez. “For a lot of these young women, it is easy to get involved with organized crime, in a country that doesn’t offer many opportunities for young people.”

Even young women who are attempting to head down the proper path seem to get held up with major obstacles: drug, violence and war. How can these women better their lives if they do not have opportunities after they win pageants and earn a college degree? These women attempt to use all the resources they can to further themselves from their environment, but it seems to be a pattern that they will fail.

War Against Men..?

27 Nov

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A friend of mine posted this on Facebook and I thought that it would be good to share. The War On Men written by Suzanne Venker for FoxNews.Com is basically claiming that women are the reason that men do not want to get married. Because women want to have careers and have equal rights, they are causing men to feel inadequate.

This article was written by a woman no less and claims that feminism has hindered the one thing that all women want: to get married. Since women let men sleep with them whenever they want and live with them with out being married, men do not see the point in getting married.

Personally I think that this is a load of codswallop  but what does everyone else think? Does this go against what we have learned in class? Or does it just reaffirm how the media perceives women?

Playing Unfair

31 Oct

      I watched the film “Playing Unfair – The Media Image of the Female Athlete” reflects on how the media portrays female athletes as weak, subordinate and sex symbols. Women athletes were not given the opportunity to be equals until the passing of Title IX. The law would not allow anyone to be rejected in participating in sports based off gender. Although the passing of Title IX legally granted equality to female athletes, there are still social boundaries to climb over.

The coverage women received differed from men. When sports announcers would say the name of athletes they address women by their first name and men by their last name. Once the video made this claim I realized I had noticed this detail before. When watching the Olympics this summer, my favorite sport to watch was tennis. I noticed when the announcer was covering Andy Roddick’s game he or she would refer to him as Roddick. However, when Serena Williams was playing her opponent they would refer to her as Serena.

“Playing Unfair” opened my eyes to how the media molds female athletes into sex symbols. The film would compare images of swimsuit models to well-known women athletes. The women had similar poses as well as wearing little clothing. The athletes would claim they wanted to show off their body because they were proud of how fit they were or it made them feel empowered. But the experts in the film made an excellent point; these women are role models to girls and young athletes should not think the only way to feel empowered is to pose half naked.

Muslim Brotherhood trains women for parliament

30 Oct

The Muslim Brotherhood political party in Cairo is training women to help them gain more seats in parliament. Currently there are only 5 women out of 213 in Egypt’s parliament. Some people believe that this is a great thing and others think that the Brotherhood is only doing it to make themselves look good. With the stereotype about women and Muslims, what does everyone think of this?

Coulter and the “R” word

25 Oct

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After the foreign policy debate Ann Coulter tweeted her support for Romney being nice to “the retard” referring to Obama. Not only does this prove that women can be just as ignorant as men, it clearly shows the turn politics has taken in recent years. I can’t imagine anyone saying something like this about the President 10-15 years ago. She has gotten a lot of backlash for her comments from reporters, the Special Olympics, and parents of children with special needs.

 

As someone in a position to be a role model for young women, she did a very poor job at setting a positive example. It’s become common knowledge that using a word like that is completely inappropriate and someone in a position to show a strong, independent woman just threw all her respect out the window.