Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

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Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by reboundstudent on Thu Mar 05, 2015 7:12 pm

I try to be feminist. But sometimes I fail. Here is my story. Feel free to share yours!

Today on Jezebel, there was a huge hullabaloo because the actress in Cinderella said while wearing a corset for one of the costumes, she could only eat soup. Additionally, she's fairly small, and the corset made her waist look smaller, leading to charges of Photoshopping. There was general outrage because beauty standards, we're starving women thin, etc. etc.

The thing is, I... don't share the outrage. I've started wearing a lot more steel boned corsets, and yeah, it's kinda difficult to eat in those things. It's like... when you're wearing really tight jeans, you maybe skip having the pasta. With "regular" lacing, I can get my waist from 32" to 28", which is pretty standard. Additionally, the ball gown she's wearing is a traditional 1860 silhouette; emphasize the shoulders and the giant hoop skirt, and you're going to get a tiny waist. Add a corset and lace it "normally," and it's no surprise she goes from maybe 24" to 20."

Well I posted that, and HUGE blow back. Why couldn't they have just laced her looser? (That... isn't how corsets work.) Why did she need a corset at all? (Cause look at that dress. Without a corset, that's be a hard dress to pull off. Take a look at the 2nd picture. I bet dollars to donuts they are also wearing corsets. Notice the nice, smooth lines? Even if you don't achieve a small waist, you wear a corset for exactly that effect.) Well the filmmakers should have chosen a different aesthetic/look because what about the children and their fragile understanding of reality? (*Sigh*)

I dunno. I guess I'm a bad feminist but I just don't see the big deal. It's 4 inches. It's a certain "look." Granted, it's a look I dig (cause yeah, historic) but I don't think it has to be something that's gonna warp female brains everywhere. Should I never wear historic costumes because it'll makes little girls think my waist is really 28"? Should I never wear a wonder bra cause OMG boobs aren't that perky! Is it okay to just kinda be sick of constantly policing how other people portray their bodies? The actress is thin; she gets smaller in a corset. Therefore, burn all corsets!

Images: http://www.vogue.com/4463911/cinderella-movie-2015-sandy-powell-costume-designer/
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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by reboot on Thu Mar 05, 2015 8:04 pm

Well, it is Jezebel*, so there are always people looking to pick a fight and be holier than thou.

That said, back in the earlier days of 3rd wave feminism I (and other younger feminists) caught A LOT of flack, so yeah, I totally know the pile on feeling.

As for Cinderella, her message and her dress, I cannot even work up the energy to care when there is shit like this going on [TW]
http://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-31698154
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2978958/ISIS-people-trafficker-charged-forcing-Syrian-refugee-children-prostitution-paedophile-ring-ran-Turkey.html
http://time.com/3704854/sudan-rape-human-rights-watch-report/
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/womens-life/11447263/Oxford-sex-grooming-ring-Police-dont-have-time-to-keep-girls-safe.html


* Apologies to Jezebel fans, but it is not my cup of tea. BCO on Kitchenette, however.... (but still get annoyed with the commentariat)
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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by Chickpea Sarada on Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:31 pm

My brother was telling me about this Pokemon video where the guy had somehow powered up a Magikarp to be able to beat a whole team of powerful Pokemon.  The Magikarp's nickname was "Rape Time."  I laughed along with him, but regretted it afterward once I was alone again.

Also, when I posted on Facebook commenting on how it's sick for society to put more of a stigma on being raped than on committing the crime, my mom said this made me seem like a man-hater.  She called me a man-hater again when I talked about entitlement.  I didn't say anything back to her.

It's hard for me to be a "good feminist" around family. It can sometimes feel like it conflicts with being a good sister/daughter.
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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by Conreezy on Fri Mar 06, 2015 12:09 am

Well, it is Jezebel

LOL. I thought the same thing. It's more and more rare to see discussions that don't turn into dogpiles of chastisement there.

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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by Raindancing on Fri Mar 06, 2015 1:18 am

Stay-at-home mom here.  According to my sister (who, incidentally, is a fan of Jezebel) this means my son will of course grow up to expect women to wait on him hand and foot.  Among some other bullshit, like my value as a human being has just generally decreased since I quit my job as an adjunct professor.

What really sucks is that my sister used to be my best friend, before I decided to quit that stupid abusive job.
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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by reboot on Fri Mar 06, 2015 12:30 pm

I went back and read the thread on Jezebel and ....wow...yeah.

What I think is funny is that there is an entire debate about the costume in a story about an abused girl whose best option in life is marrying a guy who does not recognize her and needs a shoe to figure out who the hell he was hanging out with all night*. I mean, really people, there is so much wrong with the story that unrealistic beauty standards are far, far down the list.

* If you got the version I grew up with, there is also mutilation for the sake of marriage when the sisters cut their toes and heels off to fit the shoe and then get their eyes pecked out as they are walking away with the prince (who somehow missed the blood filled shoes until the birds told him)
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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by Robjection on Sun May 10, 2015 6:38 pm

I know it's been a while, but am I bad if I find this funny?

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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by choys on Mon May 11, 2015 8:49 pm

I am a feminist. I like Daniel Tosh. (Comedy in general can be a murky place for feminists.)

One of my best friends and I had to really sit and think about whether our enjoyment of Tosh's particular style of comedy meshed with our identity as feminists when the entire thing about his rape jokes hit the internet. What it came down to for us, after a lot of discussion, was that context for the joke mattered. Yes, his rape jokes sometimes made us uncomfortable, but we also felt that we were supposed to feel uncomfortable. To us, it seemed that whenever he did have a rape joke, it was usually constructed in such a way that we were able to see it was more a commentary on the fucked up situation, than just, "haha rape joke!". For example, he had a joke about music festivals being a sign of the start of rape season, or something like that. So bottom line, Daniel Tosh is okay for now. But if it ever comes to the point where I feel that his jokes no longer have that context of highlighting fucked up situations, ideas, and behavior, then I will wash my hands of him.

Also, people are free to feel offended regardless of my own feelings on it. But, it also means a lot of my feminist friends don't always get, or know, my comedy choices because I don't want to constantly be justifying them.

Ha, when it comes down to it, same thing with my enjoyment of anime and videogames.

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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by JP McBride on Mon May 11, 2015 11:54 pm

reboot wrote:What I think is funny is that there is an entire debate about the costume in a story about an abused girl whose best option in life is marrying a guy who does not recognize her and needs a shoe to figure out who the hell he was hanging out with all night*.

We need to know more about the rate of undiagnosed autism among fairy tale princes.

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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by jcorozza on Thu May 14, 2015 7:58 pm

choys wrote:I am a feminist.  I like Daniel Tosh.  (Comedy in general can be a murky place for feminists.) 

Agreed. I love me some comedy, and I tend to laugh at it anyway, but when I sit and think about it...some gross stuff in there.
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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by fakely mctest on Sat May 16, 2015 3:38 pm

jcorozza wrote:
choys wrote:I am a feminist.  I like Daniel Tosh.  (Comedy in general can be a murky place for feminists.) 

Agreed.  I love me some comedy, and I tend to laugh at it anyway, but when I sit and think about it...some gross stuff in there.  

Patton Oswalt fan here. I like what he has to say about rape jokes recently, but his record is...spotty. There are definitely parts of his bit about writing and Deathbed: The Bed That Eats People that make me super uncomfortable but overall it makes me cackle like a witch.

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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by Guest on Mon May 18, 2015 7:55 pm

fakely mctest wrote:
Patton Oswalt fan here.  I like what he has to say about rape jokes recently, but his record is...spotty.  There are definitely parts of his bit about writing and Deathbed: The Bed That Eats People that make me super uncomfortable but overall it makes me cackle like a witch.

I'm not real big on Patton Oswalt -- I like Louis C.K. since I can relate with Louis more -- but that was a great post he wrote there.

I'll be honest, sure I'm a feminist, but I'm a terrible feminist much like I'm a terrible Christian. As in I try to be a good person, but that don't always work. Razz

In regards to being a bad feminist, well, without thinking and regrettably I will, on occasion, objectify women in my head. It doesn't necessarily make me miserable because it's my dick talking/thinking, not my head or heart. Afterwards, my head and heart are like "Dude, what the hell is wrong with you?"

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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by choys on Tue May 19, 2015 8:54 pm

jcorozza wrote:

Agreed.  I love me some comedy, and I tend to laugh at it anyway, but when I sit and think about it...some gross stuff in there.  

I feel like good comedy is meant to make you sit and think about it. Humor has a way of cutting through defenses and accessing a subconscious part of myself I'm not even aware of. I feel like the key is that we're supposed to sit with how uncomfortable comedy can make us by bringing light to some pretty messed up things and then discuss those things with others. But a lot of people just stop with the laugh and don't dig deeper. One of the rumors I heard about Dave Chappelle quitting Chappelle's Show was that he wasn't sure if the audience really got what they were laughing at and why. Whether that's true or not, it stayed with me because it crystallized for me the sense that comedy isn't "mindless" as so many call it, and that it should make us more mindful of what we laugh at and why.

fakely mctest wrote:

Patton Oswalt fan here. I like what he has to say about rape jokes recently, but his record is...spotty. There are definitely parts of his bit about writing and Deathbed: The Bed That Eats People that make me super uncomfortable but overall it makes me cackle like a witch.


I will have to watch that. Grin

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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by eselle28 on Tue May 19, 2015 9:26 pm

I'm extremely mad at Game of Thrones, but I'm not ready to stop watching it. Yet. Meanwhile, I just cannot stand The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, no matter how feminist I'm told it is.
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Re: Stories of When You Were a Bad Feminist

Post by fakely mctest on Tue May 19, 2015 10:41 pm

choys wrote:I feel like good comedy is meant to make you sit and think about it.  Humor has a way of cutting through defenses and accessing a subconscious part of myself I'm not even aware of.  I feel like the key is that we're supposed to sit with how uncomfortable comedy can make us by bringing light to some pretty messed up things and then discuss those things with others.  But a lot of people just stop with the laugh and don't dig deeper.  One of the rumors I heard about Dave Chappelle quitting Chappelle's Show was that he wasn't sure if the audience really got what they were laughing at and why.  Whether that's true or not, it stayed with me because it crystallized for me the sense that comedy isn't "mindless" as so many call it, and that it should make us more mindful of what we laugh at and why.

And I totally get that part of it.  Like, for example, I think this Chris Rock bit is definitely brilliant in terms of drawing out the "some white people complain that they're not 'allowed' to use the n-word" issue and really making it obvious how odd and weird that continual convo is.  But then, in that same show (not in the video I linked for anyone who doesn't want to run into that accidentally), he goes on a tear about how it's totally okay to call people f*gs because that's just a word that means dumb and it's a behavioral descriptor and I'm like Headsmack

No.  No that is not okay.

So sometimes, as in Rock's case, there's this weird cognitive dissonance.  Most of the time though I think it's a lazy, punch-down of a joke that people reach for because it's there and it's easy.

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