Viewing posts tagged sexism

Playing with Dolls

UPDATE, 25/09/12:  If you read this post, please read on through the comments too.  Some astute readers used the comments section to set me straight on some issues both of fact and interpretation.  As a result, my attitude towards 'Night Terrors' is now considerably more negative than my initial reaction (which you can read in the main review below).  In fairness to myself, I do spend most of the piece saying what I don't like about 'Night Terrors', including identifying some of what I call the "latent hostility" towards working-class people... but I failed to notice the wider context of the episode and so also the scale of the problem.  I don't mind admitting when I'm wrong (of course, I do really) but I hate that I blogged before giving myself sufficient time to think.  


Okay, my foolhardy project of catching up with all the Doctor Who I've not seen in order to re-synch with the new stuff (and hopefully provide myself with blogging material) continues.

Last night I finally watched 'Night Terrors'. Much to my astonishment, I didn't absolutely hate it. I mean, it wasn't particularly good... but it wasn ...

Prometheus Underground

Warning: Triggers and Spoilers.  And waffle.


Sex & Monsters

In Prometheus, the Engineers are ancient Titans who created humanity... and, it is implied, seeded the galaxy with their DNA. There is something very noticeable about them: they are all men. Meanwhile, there is a definite vaginal look to a great many of the alien bio-weapons they created and which then subsumed them. However, I don't think its really possible to read the battle between Engineers and their bio-weapons as a battle of the sexes. The weapon creatures are also phallic and penetrative, as in previous iterations of the Alien universe. All the same, it's true that presenting the creators of life (in their own image) as exclusively dudes does imply that generative power resides in the male alone. It is enough for one Engineer to dissolve his DNA into the waters of a planet to kickstart the process that will lead to animal life (if that's how the opening scene is meant to be read). The Engineers are male but apparently sexless, capable of asexual reproduction. The deadly runaway bio-weapons, which seem hermaphroditic, look like the intrusion of sex into a male but sexless world. Sex is ...

How Curses Work 3.5: Mythoimperialismo

Imperialism lies not just in the physical violence of invasion, domination, exploitation and subjugation, but also in the cultural violence of the appropriation and representation of the subjugated.

This is how exploitation and domination always works.  Patriarchy's domination of women is expressed in the marginalization, infantilization and suffocating sexualization of the female image in culture, the relentless portrayal of the woman as secondary, as an adjunct, as a commodity, as a servant or helpmate, as a source of male pleasure and satisfaction.  So the violence of imperialism is also expressed in the representation of the subjugated peoples as inferior and/or dangerous, by the plundering of their stories, histories, images, ideas, practices, customs, languages, discourses, art, architecture, etc., and their transformation into aspects of the dominant culture of the imperialist.

The subject culture is usually thus shown to be inherently deserving of domination, inherently savage, childlike, irrational and sinister.  If the subject culture is not demonized, it is usually infantilized, fanaticized (even their bravery is not real bravery but rather fanatical zeal from savages who do not feel pain or fear death the way we civilized people do), or shown as shambolic, idiotic and comic.  Needless to say, any ...

Blink and you'll miss your chance to get a man

Someone I respect a lot has recently said that Moffat's Who stories don't really display much in the way of viewpoints.  With all due respect to Gallibase forum poster Affirmation (and that's one heck of a lot of respect), I actually think Moffat's stories do tell us a lot about what he thinks. I think they tell us quite a bit about what he thinks about women, for instance.

'Blink', for example, tells us that following a woman you've just met is an acceptable (even whimsically amusing) way of wooing her. It tells us that geeky internety guys are amusingly tragic pratts... but that women exist to redeem them by accepting them. Ultimately, the gorgeous young girl misses her opportunity to 'get' the hot cool copper (she automatically imagines marrying him once she's automatically attracted to him) and has to settle for the nerd. Settling for the nerd (i.e. finally getting herself a man of some description) is the sign that she's grown up, settled her issues, is ready to move on with life, etc. Living with her mate and having a laugh were the preludes to Real Life, the start ...

Companion Relief

So, it's now pretty much official.  Amy is there to be leered at.  We now have plots that hinge on Rory being unable to stop himself staring up her skirt.

Let me just repeat that:

Doctor Who, in 2011, has episodes (albeit charity 'comedy' ones) in which vital plot points rest on a man staring up a woman's skirt without her knowledge or consent.

Classy.

To add insult to injury, the episode coyly reminds us that the man in question is the woman's husband, as though that makes it okay...  So spying on a woman's privacy and getting off on it is permissable as long as your relationship is sanctified by holy wedlock, is that it?  

Still, Amy doesn't seem to mind too much, so it must be okay.  After all, if a woman character in a show written by a man makes a sexist comment or displays a sexist attitude, that proves she's okay with sexism, as long as it's all, like, jokey and ironic 'n' stuff.

But Amy wouldn't mind, would she?  Firstly, she's Moffat's meat puppet and viewer titilation service.  ...

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