The culture war is a conversation.
While it is ultimately a conflict, more often than not this takes the form of ideas and criticism being slung back and forth across the trenches. To be heard is a minor success, but to be actually understood is victory.
Within this conversation it’s undoubtedly artists, especially those who have garnered celebrity status, who have the most powerful voices.
In 2014 the eponymous host of The Colbert Report featured a segment on his show about “The Ching-Chong Ding-Dong Foundation for Sensitivity to Orientals or Whatever”. Given his popularity it reached far and wide, and was eventually viewed by a Twitter activist who created the hashtag #CancelColbert in response.
As it was meant to call attention to and ridicule the outrageous fact that a national sports team is named after an ethnic slur the response was out of line. It was a classic case of [obvious] satire being taken the wrong way, but by inadvertently contributing to what has been dubbed “a fake year of outrage’ this person’s misstep resulted in others who campaign for better representation and the like being worse than silenced, which is to say, ignored.
Despite calling out from what is ostensibly the same side, the misstep of a single loud voice meant that others were unheard.
The exchange between artist and critic is rarely ever an even one, and only becomes more difficult given the sensitivity surrounding such personal creative endeavours.
Lena Dunham is the star and creator of HBO’s Girls, and received enough disapproval about the lack of diversity in a show set in New York City that she was asked about it by NPR. She responded that “[she takes] that criticism very seriously,” and that very same year had Donald Glover playing Hannah’s Black boyfriend on the show.
While the presence of Sandy on the dramedy was a beneficial one, with arguments between the two capturing the tension that can be present in interracial relationships [including such exchanges as: “I never thought about the fact that you were black once.” / “That’s insane. You should, because that’s what I am.”], Glover’s character faltered in that he was very much a response to criticism. Continue reading
Posted in art, celebrity, Comedy, communication, race, television, writing
Tagged #CancelColbert, activist, apology, art, asian, Asian-American, comedy, conversation, criticism, critics, Culture War, Ghost In The Shell, Girls, Kimmy Goes to a Play!, Kimono You Didn't, Lena Dunham, netflix, offence, outrage, race, racism, rape, Respectful Asian Portrayals in Entertainment, Scarlett Johannson, Tina Fey, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, voice, whitewashing, yellowface
First thing’s first, normally I have Fridays off, and therefore write and/or finish up these posts then. My co-worker took a trip south of the 49th parallel for some American holiday or other leaving me to cover for her. Such is life, and also why this post may be shorter than most. Second thing’s second, which is that I have, improbably, actually blogged about Taylor Swift on two prior occasions.
In December of 2012 I spent some time discussing the interpretation of her work, particularly in light of those championing her hit “Mean” as an anthem for the myriad forms of persecution they were facing. Over half a year later I did my best to shame those who thought that voting for a 39-year-old to win a contest and thereby smell her hair would be funny [because it’s not]. One topic has continued to be so very, very relevant while the other has more or less turned out to be a one-time thing. Here’s a hint, it’s the one that has to do with how she’s perceived in the public eye-
Posted in art, feminism, music
Tagged authentic, Blank Page, Caitlin PenzeyMoog, content, country music, criticism, done me wrong, double standards, feminism, Feminist, growing up, Hank Williams, jilted lover, Lena Dunham, music, musician, relatable, self- esteem, self-aware, Taylor Swift
Have you seen these revamped tabloids floating around?
These awesome rewrites were prompted by a recent challenge that Vagenda Magazine gave on Twitter:
It’s a Twitter campaign I love for two big reasons. Continue reading
Posted in Comedy, feminism, internet, media
Tagged #thevagenda, anger, Any Adams, equalism, equality vs. equity, feminism, funny, George Clooney, gossip, humanism, humour, issues, Lena Dunham, magazines, news, rant, sexism, tabloids, Twitter, twitter campaign, Vagenda Magazine