Thursday, 12 April 2012

More racism in your misogyny?

When I originally started drafting this post, my topic was the skinny on skinny or why do you still have too much fat on your body? Faithful readers of DJ! have read my screeds on that topic here, here and here.

So. There's a young actress in a blockbuster film that has become the target of the slash-and-burn media.
NY Times critic Manohla Dargis calls her "a new female warrior" [...] then in the next sentence says that she doesn't look hungry enough and that her "womanly figure makes a bad fit for a dystopian fantasy about a people starved into submission." [...]

This is beyond disgusting. Lawrence looks normal. Her male co-stars look even healthier (and have some seriously big muscles) yet no one thinks they are too healthy or big boned or big boobed or just plain old fat. Look at her. She's not fat. She's even thin and she is also totally normal about her food intake. She likes to eat and won't diet. Power to her.

Sometimes I think that we are so used to seeing such skinny women in the movies that when we see a normal looking girl we think she is big.
"... when we see a normal looking girl we think she is big." Yeah, about that normal-looking thing ...

A blogger at Jezebel goes to town on this product, the latest installment in the never-ending creation of new markets for self-loathing - a business model that requires self-loathing to ensure the consumer target is receptive to its newest crap.
Needless to say, certain citizens are troubled by this product—which, in addition to just being fucking insane, brings up painful issues about the hierarchy of skin tone within the Indian community. As if it isn't bad enough that darker-skinned people are encouraged to stay out of the sun and invest in skin-bleaching products like 'Fair & Lovely', and that white actresses are being imported to play Indian people in Bollywood movies, now everyone has to be insecure about the fact that their vaginas happen to be the color that vaginas are??? Splendid! God, I was just saying the other day that my misogyny didn't have enough racism in it.
The meticulous parsing of the advert was a tad absurd, though the purpose of the product is too sadly evident. Bleach your punany, cos it has to be lily-white, virginal and pure!

Yes. The Georgia O'Keefe plate, from The Dinner Party, Judy Chicago, 1979.


Niles said...

I love people who don't read fantasy to start nitpicking on the 'reality' of fictional characters like they know whereof they speak.

And just to be 'realistic' about it, The 'gladiators' of Hunger Games aren't going to win poopall if they're starved. Fighters need food energy for body and brain to win anything, or are the reviewers jonesing on the latest UFC matches where the bag 'o' bones takes the matches?(sarcasm).

As for bleaching one's 'ladyparts' white, damned if you do, damned if you don't.

There's a product touted for paleskin women that is used to tint ladyparts nice and rosy so they're much more inviting to...someone.

Takes cunning linguists to come up with these sales spiels.

Námo Mandos said...

I read the book recently in anticipation of watching the movie. The main character has *been* starved, but is not starving at the beginning of the story. Nevertheless she lives a very hard life.

I was pleasantly surprised by how good the book was. I read it as a sort of reverse allegory for an abusive relationship. The sort of relationship in which the abused is required to partake of her (or his) own abuse, to "enjoy" it, and to become complicit in it. That's the relationship between the Capitol and the Districts and the purpose of the Hunger Games.

Laura said...

Have you read this article about the new Arizona Abortion Bill? It states life begins at menstruation. Sigh. How sad. And they say there is no war on women. Riiiiiight.,_the_most_draconian_anti-abortion_law_so_far?page=entire

fern hill said...


Hadn't read that article, but yeah, we follow that kinda thing up here. Loved the bit about a virgin getting pregnant.

Moving the goalposts on everything, now including pregnancy.

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