Check out all of the posts from our Women Directors Theme Week here.
Every time someone calls to question the fact that Lena Dunham parades her rolls of fat in front of her audience, we need to examine why they’re questioning it. Is it because they’re wondering how it serves the narrative of ‘Girls’? Or is it because they’re balking at “less-than-perfection” (according to normative societal conventions) in the female form?
The first season of the British sci-fi show ‘Black Mirror’ frames its stories through an unintentionally narrow and myopic point of view, just like the first season of HBO’s ‘Girls.’ For some reason, though, ‘Black Mirror’s extremely specific point of view is mistaken as being universal, while the extremely specific point of view offered by ‘Girls’ is not.
The equality of men and women on the basis of healthy and consensual sex is sex positivity according to the Women and Gender Advocacy Center. Thus, to desire sex positivity is to be inherently feminist.
In this moment, then, Elena is completely relieved of the conventional position of girl-as-object, and is therefore able to occupy a different position as a desiring subject. By purposefully making herself invisible, Elena momentarily evades and perhaps refuses to be defined by the adult male gaze that governs girlhood.
Negative depictions of fat people are the norm throughout all of pop culture. Though fatphobia crosses racial, gender, and class lines, audiences judge women the most harshly. Fat characters are frequently shown as disgusting, sad, or unlovable. In the horror genre, fatness is frequently represented as terrifying and unnatural. In comedies, fat bodies are often the source of humor. Though few and far between, there are a growing number of fat positive representations popping up throughout TV and film.
Call For Writers: Unlikeable Women
Check out what we’ve been reading this week–and let us know what you’ve been reading/writing in the comments!
In order to keep producing these girls that terrify the status quo, more adults need to take that position and not freak out when they catch their children—and particularly their girls—doing things they apparently shouldn’t. It’s only once we start adding adult meaning to children’s actions that they couldn’t possibly fathom that they start to take a sinister shape.
While ‘Broad City’ is about girls, it isn’t “About Girls.” It’s not a show that makes it its mission to make statements about modern young womanhood, it’s a show that makes it its mission to be funny as all fuck and depict an incredibly sweet friendship between two well-drawn female characters. And that’s just as important.
‘Rabbit-Proof Fence’ (2002), directed by Phillip Noyce, is a powerful and assertive film version of this tragedy. Based on three real-life indigenous survivors of this era, known collectively as the Stolen Generation, the film is set in 1931 and tells the story of three young girls who were kidnapped on the government’s authority, forced into an “aboriginal integration” program 1,200 miles from home, and who are determined to run away and make it home on their own by following the fence. Unfortunately, the school’s director hunts them with the veracity of an early 1800s US slavemaster. He is relentless and determined, but the girls are as well.
It’s been more than 12 years since ‘Daria’ ended and it’s still in public consciousness. The beloved MTV series and its heroine frequently end up lists of best TV shows, cult shows, favourite female characters and 90s nostalgia. Music licensing issues that held up home video releases for years, ended in 2010, when a DVD set with the series’ entire run of 65 episodes and two TV movies was released. And last year, College Humor produced a fake trailer for a live-action movie starring Aubrey Plaza. In today’s media landscape, where cancelation no longer means the end of a series, Daria is often one internet commentators beg for more of. And yet, the memory most people seem to have of Daria as a character isn’t quite right.