I keep saying this is an art blog, because it is. That said, here’s another episode of Spot the Misogyny. In a historic reversal of the usual male/female roles, Clyfford Still will have to wait his turn until this feminist blogger is done talking about women’s issues. Clyffie isn’t going anywhere, and there’s a lot going on that I don’t want to miss engaging with.
I left a comment on this “fun, fearless” pop-culture site aimed at women.
The story linked above begins with an image of heaving cleavage (thankfully not entirely exposed) and the message: “Has a degree in neuroscience”.
It goes on to talk about how a fashion designer started a website that claims to fight the objectification of women. Viewers are encouraged to send in photos of their body parts with uplifting messages attached thereto. This, they claim, will “take control of the male gaze” and “empower women”.
Some forms of misogyny are obvious. Some are very, very subtle. The worst kind, the kind that makes me grind my teeth and throw things, is the kind where some woman plays the Judas goat, presenting herself as an ally to the feminist cause, only to do her best to decoy us back into the labyrinth of empowerfullized consumerist choices. She’s selling the same old beauty/fashion snake-oil, only it’s disguised as rebellion. The ad copy on its label talks about how smart and powerful and awesome you are.
Nothing from the beauty or fashion industry is feminist. Nothing. If you want to use their products, I’m not going to tell you not to. Just don’t lie to yourselves that it’s anything but patriarchal compliance, and don’t trust the people who sell it to you.
My reaction is submitted for posterity here, in case they delete it. Their sponsors are corporate, after all.
If women were ever accepted as fully human beings, “beauty” and fashion would become irrelevant.
This scares the bejeezus out of the corporate-owned media, because they see themselves losing the billions of dollars that they make off of exploiting women’s anxieties and their need for acceptance.
Yet they realize that women are getting tired of being judged solely according to how sexually relevant a male-dominated world perceives them as being.
So, with insidious cleverness, they repackage the same old beauty-compliance bullshit as empowerment and stick a “feminism” label on it. They slyly suggest that the actual feminists who see through this ruse are just ugly old jealous haters who don’t want anybody to have any fun.
Here’s a surefire way to tell if anything is misogynist: Do men have to do it?
Do men have to write words on their body parts and upload sexxxay images thereof to a website to “empower” themselves?
Then it’s misogynist.
It really is that simple.
You’ll know when feminism ever succeeds, because we won’t be expected to show our bodies on demand. And articles about women won’t be prefaced by Mountains o’Cleavage images, any more than articles about men today begin with a closeup of a scrotum.
I’m interested in your comments.