i also posted that picture of me on facebook and someone commented on it that i look like a hobbit
glad to see it’s not just tumblr that thinks...
tears off my clothes and runs down the street screaming “STARFLEET WAS SUPPOSED TO BE ABOUT SAVING WHALES”
Today I found out both that a) gyzym has written rule 63 good omens fanfic where crowley is a bitter activist lesbian and b) irisbleufic actually...
oh god the first reboot movie is on tv and i’m watching it with my parents and we just watched the new movie this afternoon so naturally i’m fucking...
Don’t get too excited! It’s not an awesome trend like autotune, or David Guetta-produced beats. It’s a shitty one. Namely, male pop stars capitalising on female insecurity in order to make themselves seem caring and special.
I first noticed it with Bruno Mars’ Just The Way You Are. In case you don’t remember that one, it went something like this: “I know when I compliment her she won’t believe me… Every time she asks me ‘do I look okay?’ I say ‘when I see your face, there’s not a thing that I would change’”.
The latest addition to the trend is One Direction’s upcoming single, What Makes You Beautiful. “You don’t know you’re beautiful! That’s what makes you beautiful!” they croon in the chorus. “The way that you flip your hair gets me overwhelmed, But when you smile at the ground it aint hard to tell, you don’t know you’re beautiful!” How sweet, right? Actually no. It pisses me right off because:
1. It reinforces the idea that women need men to reassure them that they’re beautiful.
The One Direction song actually features the lyrics “Don’t need make up to cover up, Being the way that you are is enough”, which is worryingly reminiscent of thisshitty image that recently did the rounds on tumblr. Oh my god, male validation! Thank you! All of my self-image problems have disappeared!
2. Both songs carry the message that women don’t need to be insecure, while simultaneously idealising the coy, shy girl as perfect and worthy (“You don’t know you’re beautiful! That’s what makes you beautiful!”). This makes it clear that women shouldn’t be too confident or self-assured - after all, the girl that they love is perfect just the way she is, and she spends all her time staring at the ground and asking if she looks alright. She’s the one being idolised. Her modesty is seen as admirable; a perfect princess with natural beauty and absolutely no other traits whatsoever apart from that natural beauty and a lack of self-esteem, and she’s being portrayed as the perfect girlfriend.
Before you accuse me of being a boring feminist who criticises absolutely everything in pop culture and thinks that no man can do right, I’ll give an example of a male pop star doing female empowerment properly: Ne-Yo’s Miss Independent.
“There’s something about the kind of woman that want you but don’t need you…. ’Cause she works like a boss, plays like a boss, car and a crib - she’s about to pay them both off, and her bills are paid on time. She’s made for a boss, only a boss, anything less she tellin’ them to get lost; that’s the girl that’s on my mind. She got her own thing, that’s why I love her.”
I could quote the lyrics all day because they’re awesome. Miss Independent doesn’t need Ne-Yo to tell her that she looks okay, ‘cos she knows she’s fucking amazing - and besides, she didn’t ask him anyway. It doesn’t even matter what she looks like, because she’s got other apsects to her personhood- like a feisty personality, and a great job, and leadership skills, and a house and car. Ne-Yo doesn’t mention her physical appearance at all (apart from saying that she has a matching manicure and pedicure), because it’s her attitude that he finds sexy. Personally I think that’s a million times better than “You’re insecure, don’t know what for, you’re turning heads when you walk through the door. I don’t why you’re being shy, and turn away when I look into your eyes.”
If you’re the kind of person who prefers analyzing visuals to analyzing lyrics, just watch the Ne-Yo video, and compare the body language of Gabrielle Union (main actress lady) with the girl in Bruno Mars’ video. Her coyness is actually painful to watch.
In a nutshell: Insecurities among young women will fade when society starts telling them that it doesn’t really matter what they look like, because other things about them matter so much more. Female self-esteem doesn’t come from men saying “you shouldn’t be shy because I fancy you and you have nice hair.” And since it just means more airtime given to songs focusing solely on female appearance, I’m afraid that shit doesn’t even help.
i’ve seen a lot of the comments with reblog’s of this that claim this is a backward train of thought but I must agree, women should be celebrated for the things that make them human not because a man has told us HEY YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL JUST THE WAY YOU ARE, its not that feminist’s can’t take a compliment and it’s not that we have to find something to complain about in the face of “obvious” “advances” (i quote this because sexism is still seriously ingrained in our societal system) it is that we just want to be treated EQUALLY across the board, there should be no need to claim that all women are beautiful and thus we should be more self-confident and self-assured, what there is a need for is more positive images of females (from the male perspective) where we are respected for our actions and words and for our accomplishments, in all of these self-proclaimed female appreciative songs we’re being appreciated for how we LOOK not for who we ARE regardless of whether or not you’re saying that we’re all beautiful no matter what
to sum it up songs that celebrate the shy modest beautiful-just-the-way-she-is girl are no more helpful to those shy girls than they are to any woman as long as we’re being reduced to a value based on appearance.
added: IT ALSO REITERATES THAT MEN SHOULD BE PRAISED FOR SIMPLY BEING HUMAN (ie “look I wrote a song that says all women are beautiful without that extra stuff society shoves on them, give me a fucking award”)
I go away for one night and my post has 500 more notes!
I’m in the process of looking through them right now, but I thought I would reblog this commentry because it does a really good job of further explaining what I meant.