Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Could Megan Fox Be "Nice" and "Naughty"?

After listening to Jean Kilbourne's enlightening lecture yesterday on the harmful media messages that contribute to the thin, perfect beauty ideal, I almost passed out after seeing this cover of Cosmo with Megan Fox. First, how many more surveys can Cosmo possibly come up with to tell women how to satisfy men? What ever happened to talking to your partner about what he enjoys sexually? Second, what about what women want to see during sex? Because sex is a one-sided act?!

Anyhow, the real point of this post is about how the magazine portrays Megan Fox. The tagline for her article states, "Megan Fox. Naughty or Nice? You Decide" and yet, hasn't the magazine already decided for us by putting this seductive image of Megan on the cover?

This article goes on to discuss Megan's tough girl image. This image is based around the fact that she curses and has tattoos. Well during a rough day, I've been known to use some swear words, so I guess I'm a tough girl too?! There is a problem with the limiting language we use to discuss women. Why is it so important that a woman is either naughty or nice? This article doesn't ask her about anything of substance, so we are led to believe that she is either naughty or nice. She can only fit within these two descriptions because according to this article, she doesn't have a brain. Why must we reduce women to these one-note images?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

"I am my HAIR. It's all the glory I bare"

Hair. It's a big deal. The Vagina Monologues and Lady Gaga taught me that, so when I saw this headline, I cringed. Emma Watson shares that journalists asked her if she was a lesbian after she got a pixie haircut. These questions are problematic because (a) her sexual orientation isn't anyone else's business except for her and (b) why is it assumed that women with pixie haircuts must be lesbians. Hair is gendered, and we need to challenge the assumptions that we make about people based on their physical appearances. These journalists are relying on an old stereotype that lesbians have more "masculine" appearances and short hair like a man. Isn't it about time we start embracing wider views on masculinity and femininity? If we don't do this, children may suffer the mental consequences of not fitting into the gender norms expected of them.

I respect Emma Watson for expressing in interviews that sexiness is subtle, and she doesn't want to flaunt her looks. The way these journalists tried to "label" Emma signifies a bigger issue about needing to label others and place them into convenient categories. I'm not interested in being placed in anyone else's categories. 

*More proof that hair is an important subject...

Thursday, February 9, 2012

A Real-Life Barbie Doll?

This article on a Romanian-born model with a 20-inch waist has some people outraged. 

There are some interesting dynamics surrounding this article. On the one hand, people are repulsed at this woman's size and her negative influence on young girls. The article points out that she eats three meals a day and still looks like this, evoking the Kate Moss illusion that "it's easy for women to be that thin."

On the other hand, I question if this is her natural figure, and it may be a source of anxiety for her that she looks like this. Thoughts?

Monday, February 6, 2012

The "Truth" about 2011's Oscar Nominated Films

The Guardian has posted some thought-provoking, and I would argue controversial movie posters under the tagline: if posters told the truth - in pictures...

Truth is a difficult word for me to digest because it's subjective and depends on who's doing the interpreting. 

Feminist Film had some interesting commentary on the posters.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

What I've Been Reading

I've been reading some great, interesting, and strange articles lately that I'd like to share. 

Stanford study found that social media is hurting young girls' social development.

Are the movie posters for French actor, Jean Dujardin's new film too provocative

Male Birth Control: Check out this study about male contraception that decreases amount of sperm.

I loved Viola's Davis's speech at the SAG Awards. If you haven't seen it, WATCH IT! With that in mind, I was sad to read this article where Octavia Spencer discusses her unhealthy weight. Can't we focus on the film's accolades instead of the weight of its actresses?

Scary story about a young girl who is protesting the inclusion of transgender children in Girl Scouts. Question: When and where should LGBTQ education begin? Just when I think we are taking steps forward, I see that we are moving backwards. A bill that went into effect in California on January 1st to include LGBTQ historical figures in history curriculum is meeting some roadblocks.

Some thoughts from a fellow single woman.

Film, What to Expect When You're Expecting, Glamorizes Pregnancy

So, the movie posters for the film, What to Expect When You're Expecting were recently released. A couple of examples are below:

Here's what I'm getting from these posters:
-All pregnant women are beautiful, white, and in shape and look like there's a basketball under their shirts?!
-I think my biggest problem with these posters is that they make these women sound stupid. Isn't pregnancy about having a child not about how horny a woman is or how big her boobs are? So pregnant women are not capable of having thoughts due to "pregnancy brain"?

*Special thanks to Hillary Combs and Eleanor Schmitt for contributing to this post.