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“New” girl power??? April 30, 2007

Posted by kelly in alias, bodies, controversy, Female Power, feminism, Girl Power.

I just read this article from New Zealand, it’s called “Sass to Sleaze: new girl power.” The author, Kevin Airs, writes of a significant shift from the Spice Girls brand of girl power, to the recent more sexualized versions of Beyonce, Christina Aguilera, and Lindsay Lohan. (more…)


Teenage Pregnancy April 30, 2007

Posted by Melissa in abortion, controversy, in the news, Keisha Castle-Hughes, motherhood, race, teenage pregnancy, Whale Rider.

I just saw a story on People Magazine’s website about Keisha Castle-Hughes and the recent birth of her child. The actress just turned 17 in March and has been dating her boyfriend (20 years old) for the past three years. While reading the story, I was shocked to realize that this is the first time I have ever heard of any teenage pregnancy in the celebrity world and more shocked to feel that this is a story the website should not be covering. Teenage pregnancy is a huge “problem” in the United States, and to see the magazine cover the story in such a nonchalant manner really bothers me. People Magazine claims to cover the stories of relevant people, both in Hollywood and Old Town, USA, and while addressing the stories of “people that matter” the magazine does nothing to address relevant social issues. Though the birth of a child is a happy occasion (and big money in the news) I can’t help but feel that it is wrong to celebrate a child bringing another child into the world. I guess what is so bothersome is that when teenage pregnancy is usually addressed its done so in terms of how the “problem” effects Black and Latino communities, and now we see a wealthy actress- who should fall into the same category as the other teenage mothers- being celebrated for having the same “problem.” By publishing the story I feel the magazine is saying its okay if a teenager has children so long as they can pay for them. I’m interested to know how other people feel about the trivialization of such a relevant social issue?

nationalism and the ownership of women April 29, 2007

Posted by sindhub in big brother, controversy, in the news, india, janet jackson, justin timberlake, nationalism, richard gere, shilpa shetty, superbowl incident.
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Our class discussion about nationalism and women’s role in it as mothers who continue their people’s bloodlines, and therefore need to be protected, seems particularly in light of a recent controversy: Richard Gere kisses Shilpa Shetty

Shilpa Shetty is a popular Indian actress who most recently made headlines for being a contestant on the UK version of Big Brother and being the target of racist namecalling by one of her housemates.  Last week, Richard Gere kissed her at an HIV awareness event, which caused a big hullaballoo among the right wing in India, who claimed that it not only offended their sensibilities, but that it was also an affront to India as a nation.  They burned effigies of Gere and criticized Shetty (who laughed the whole thing off), and recently a local court called for Gere’s arrest, prompting him to apologize…

So yeah, I thought the whole idea of women needing to be protected–not just their physical well-being, but their ‘honor’ and ‘reputation’–for the sake of a nation’s pride, was particularly relevant in this instance.  I also think it’s interesting that the nation will turn against the woman (the ‘blame the victim’ mentality), and not just the other side’s man.  What I find bothersome about the whole thing is that Shetty was completely unaware that Gere was going to get as physically affectionate with her as he did (the whole thing is just really awkward to watch).  It sort of reminds me of the Superbowl incident with Justin Timberlake and Janet Jackson and her nipple; everyone was outraged by her nipple, but no one was bothered by Timberlake basically ripping her shirt apart.

The video of Gere & Shetty is behind the cut: (more…)