Geek Chic

Revenge%20of%20the%20NerdsIn years past, glasses were seen as an indicator that the character who wore them sees more clearly than other characters, and this pattern has become more visible in recent years( Inness, 2007). Glasses have always connoted brilliance, and brilliance has traditionally been, with few exceptions associated with masculinity(Inness, 2007). But a new day has arrived, “GEEK CHIC”.

“Geek chic” refers to the embracing of stereotypically “geek” characteristics including black-rimmed glasses, T-shirts with geek in-jokes, and more technically complex accessories.

There are multiple interpretations of the term “geek chic”, with heavy black-rimmed glasses being the sole defining trait as far as the press is concerned. Wearing them is sufficiently notable, to have celebrities like David Beckham and Justin Timberlake being reported as “trying geek chic”.

Many NBA players wear lensless glasses with thick plastic frames like horn-rimmed glasses during post-game interviews, geek chic that draws comparisons to Steve Urkel.

To geeks themselves, the term is used for “reclaiming the geek identity as something not only meaningful, but also stylish.  In this usage, the term “geek chic” can even be used as a positive contrast to the somewhat more negative term “geeky”. So with so many celebrities and NBA players wearing these “geek” glasses, the term geek is seemed normal today versus being seen as an outcast like the characters in “Revenge of the Nerds”.

It was amazing to see how this new fashion trend has inspired so many people to get in touch with their inner geek. There’s websites that are designed to show you the proper way to look geek chic such as: http://www.wikihow.com/Wear-Geek-Chic-Style-%28for-Girls%29.  Progress like this might mean that someday we might see a glasses wearing girl or boy on television who is actually cool from the start and not thought of as different or nerdy to  their peers.

Inness, S(2007).Geek Chic, Smart Women in Popular Culture. New York: PalGrave MacMillan

http://www.wikihow.com/Wear-Geek-Chic-Style-%28for-Girls%29

The Real Housewives of Atlanta

I chose to blog about this show , because recently in my Women, Girls and the Media Course we read a chapter in the book entitled, The Rise of Enlightened Sexism by Susan Douglas called, Reality Bites. This chapter gives us the opinion of the author regarding reality TV. She makes some valid points in regards to the representation of African-American and women of color on reality TV.  Most of the times African-American women are casted to portray the bitch ” on the show. Or their dismissed earlier in competitive reality shows eg: Survivor, because their strength and confidence is seen as a threat to other cast members. Is this an accurate portrayal of the Black woman? Reality TV producers wants you to think it is. The images of black women on tv wants the viewing audience to believe that all black women have attitudes, are loud, bitchy,  have chips on their shoulders, and aren’t marriage material. 

However, when I watch the RHOA , this group of women all fit the negatives images that are portrayed on Reality TV. Did the show start off with so much drama and distaste? or do these women who are on this show feel that they have to play the part of the bitch, home wrecker, and constantly be loud to be heard to get the ratings for the network? In fact, Atlanta is not only the highest rated show of the The Real Housewives franchise, it was the highest rated reality series on the Bravo network.

Some of the ladies on this show that really stand out on this show this season thus far has been , NeNe Leaks , who is the loudest one in the group- she is forever telling people: “I don’t keep up with the Joneses, I am the Joneses” or “I have arrived, and the spotlight is on me honey.”  NeNe was a stripper in her prior life and has no qualms in letting people know of past employment as seen in the last episode this past week. However, her confidence, loud, boisterous self has landed her other roles in show like; Celebrity Apprentice and the New Normal. 

Kandi Burruss, is the self-proclaimed actress/musician in the group. Her motto:”I may be small, but my empire keeps on growing.” She is well-known in the music industry, ,clothing store owner, and has a production company. She is portrayed as the “instigator” of the group. She says one thing to some of the ladies, hear what they have to say , then goes and tell the opposing ladies. She’s the single mother in the group and you always see her daughter hanging around her listening to adult conversation (which bothers me, because I was always taught to stay out of grown folks business).

The newest cast member this season is Kenya Moore. She won the Miss USA competition in 1993 and has appeared on various movies. She is the surprise to me this season. I guess because she won Miss USA you would belive that she would be tasteful, respectful, and cordial.  But she is totally opposite., “I won Miss USA, not Miss Congeniality,”is what she makes known about her personality and she’s right. She’s the flirty one on the show and has no problem being flirtatious with other men in front of her current boyfriend, Even flirting with another cast member husband, who she says is “fine”.

 Bottom line; the way women of color are represented in our culture is so very flawed that we really must consider the ways social class plays into these harmful stereotypes in order to thoroughly unpack the racism at the core(Sisson, 2012). Without counterpoints, misrepresentations like these feed the narrative that black people “don’t deserve” or “can’t handle” money(Sisson, 2012).

Sisson, G(2012).  The 99%: Why the Real Housewives of Atlanta Aren’t “Our Kind of People”. Retrieved from:http://bitchmagazine.org/post/the-99-real-housewives-of-atlanta-aren%E2%80%99t-our-kind-of-people-feminism-class-television

 

The rise in Interracial Dating

My cousin was recently telling me that her and her boyfriend just celebrated their 1yr anniversary . Her boyfriend is white and is a wonderful guy. I told her how happy I was that she finally met someone who could keep her happy for a year and who gets along with her daughter. 

Interracial dating is becoming more accepted in the United States today- The percentage of African-American marriages involving a white spouse more than tripled between 1960 and 1990.  Movies, Music Videos , commercials and even magazine advertisements now  will feature a male white model with a Black woman. Either embracing , cuddling, or just looking happy together as a couple. Some commercials even have children in the commercial that look mix.  Just look at the many actors and actresses of color in Hollywood that date outside of their race: Halle Berry, Lawrence Fishbourne, Taye Diggs, Robert De Niro, Whoopie Goldberg, and many more.

Has society finally accepted the fact that Love can come in all shapes and colors? Looking beyond the color spectrum is ok. Despite progress, race and ethnicity remain divisive issues in American culture.  It’s realistic to expect that prejudices, stereotypes and challenges will be encountered when dating someone outside of your race.

In the music video by Elle Varner:“I Don’t Care” follows the story of two couples: 1) a same-sex interracial couple that is threatened into a fight at a party but ends up escaping to save each other and 2) a young interracial couple that draws the wrath of the girl’s father when the boy drops her off at home. Elle and her featured lover seem to complement the blissful, paradise-love that those couples experience with each other despite the constant hurtful disapproval of others towards their relationships, which can never stop them from loving each other.  The Video is shot well and shows the viewing audience at the end, Love has no color barriers.

Perhaps all this interracial romance is a step toward eliminating racial hatred. Given that one outcome of these unions is interracial children, races are increasingly blending. As it becomes more difficult to stick people into categories, judging people according to labels and stereotypes becomes more difficult. Maybe a day will come where it is blatantly clear to everyone that racism makes no sense.

Lingerie Football- R U Serious

I think this has got to be another money maker to exploit women.  Granted , I’m sure some of the players who participate in this league are true athletes.  But why is it necessary for them to wear lingerie that shows off their bodies?  Would they get the same amount of coverage if they wore uniforms that covered them up?  I think the same apply to women who wrestle in the WWE. Their usually dressed in very little and leave very little to the imagination. Most of these women have appeared in Playboy and other men magazines. Is this the price a woman have to pay (showing her assets) to make it in the entertainment industry? Double standard is prevalent in this league and other industries in our society when speaking about the male and female.

The Lingerie Football League is an all-woman league of football teams that play in skimpy uniforms, primarily consisting of  lingerie and shoulder pads.  The league began in 2005 as an extension of the Lingerie Bowl, a halftime event held during the Super Bowl.  Just like in the NFL, the Lingerie Football League is played in a full-contact manner with players wearing lingerie, pads and helmets.  The rules differ from the NFL as the field is smaller, consisting of a 50-yard field rather than the traditional 100 yards. Why should the field be smaller? Is this a way to say that women can’t run as far as men?  There is no punting or field goals and games consist of two 17-minute halves plus an eight-minute sudden-death overtime period if necessary.  Rather than using the point-after attempt following a touchdown, teams have the option to score one extra point using a rush or pass at the two-yard line or two points using a rush or pass at the five-yard line.

In the 2010-11 Lingerie Football League season, 10 teams participate, including the addition of new teams in Orlando, Florida, and Baltimore, Maryland.  Teams in New York and Denver withdrew from the league for the season.  The season began on September 24, 2010, with weekly games on Fridays.

Sources:

http://www.mahalo.com/lingerie-football-league/

www.youtube.com/watch?v=UbnucSWsH1s

Ugly Betty- Common Day Shero

Recently, I’ve been watching re-runs of Ugly Betty. One of my favorite sitcoms shows that was cancelled in 2010 due to low ratings.

For those who never watched the show, Ugly Betty was about a young and quirky, 22year old Mexican American woman, named Betty Suarez who lacked fashion sense. She is known to be bold, good-hearted, and slightly naïve.

These qualities she possessed sometimes was mistaken for weakness by others. Betty was always willing to go over and beyond to help others realize their true potential but she was always ridiculed for her fashion sense and kindness. Betty came from a family that nurtured and valued morals and traditions. They always supported each other in a lot of decisions that effected them as a family and individuals. Is this the answer to a lot of the family problems that exist in society today? Instilling family values and morals. Going back to the basics.

Betty is thrust into a different world when she lands a job at Mode, a trendy, high fashion magazine based in Manhattan that is part of the publishing empire. Bradford (CEO of Mode) hires the inexperienced Betty as his womanizing son’s (Daniel) newest personal assistant to curb his habit of sleeping with his assistants. As time goes by, Betty and Daniel become friends and help each other navigate their individual professional and personal lives.

This was an example of how men tend to hire women that exemplifies beauty to be personal assistants and eventually become intimate with them in the workplace that usually cause chaos. However, having a woman who is unattractive tend to keep things in order in the workplace. Does one’s outer appearance land them the job? nine times out of ten, most times it does, unfortunately.

Ever since the show’s debut, the main characters, especially the title character, have quickly become the latest fixtures in the pop media culture. On May 8, 2007, star America Ferrera was honored by TIME on the magazine’s annual list of the 100 most influential people. The event took place at New York’s Lincoln Center and the actress was recognized for defying stereotypes with the show. The success of Ugly Betty and how it deals with body imaging among women in general would inspire a series of reports on Entertainment Tonight, in which reporter Vanessa Minillo went undercover in a fatsuit to see if women were discriminated on the basis of how they look. Gay awareness groups like GLAAD have also noted the positive impact the show has had regarding Betty’s teen-aged nephew Justin, who realizes that he is gay.

How much better could corporate America be if every major company had a Betty Suarez in the office? If men and women were not so quick to judge someone by the clothes they wore and their outward appearance? If family values were instilled in our young girls at a young age so they could become intelligent and strong women?

Works Cited

Ugly Betty” Canceled By ABC, USA Today, January 27, 2010

The Time 100″. Time. May 3, 2007. http://www.time.com/time/specials/2007/time100/article/0,28804,1595326_1595332_1616652,00.html. Retrieved May 26, 2010.

Hello world!

Hi,

I’m a newbie when it comes to blogging.  If anyone has any suggestions on how to make my blogs better, please post your suggestions.   I have currently entered this arena for a class that I’m taking that involves Women, Girls , and the Media. I’m looking forward to posting on my blog as well as reading my classmates weekly blogs.

Happy blogging!

Starr