09 February 2007

Misogyny Poll

Less than 24 hours after the death of Anna Nicole Smith, CNN has a poll up trying to figure out exactly how people objectify her the most. Only one of the options have her as a subject, a human being, a person. No, instead your main options are "gold-digger," "surgically-enhanced model," "glamorous star," or All of the Above. Predictably the most human categorization of this woman is in a distant third place, well behind gold-digger and some combination of all the other object categories. Like anybody, specifically any woman, who lives a life in the spotlight, there is always a rush to stamp them with something that makes them feel less like "the rest of us," a normal person who has feelings and hopes and dreams of their own. They are othered, they are different, they are an object to be disseminated, discussed, ridiculed, criticized, and used for whatever selfish ends individuals and conglomerates see fit. One doesn't need to be a supporter or a fan of Anna Nicole to say that she deserves better than this:

3 comments:

anna lou said...

HA! The MSN homepage this morning had a picture of her up an the headline said: "What made us care about Anna Nicole?" and the subheadline mentioned that she was a Playboy Playmate. I read it and thought to myself, "Good question guys, what IS it that would make us actually care about a Playboy Playmate?!" Needless to say, the headline's been changed, and now it simply reads: "What drew us to Anna Nicole? The short, tragic life of a pop culture icon".

And I was so proud that they had originally recognized the misogyny.

Major eye roll.

Kim said...

Nicely done, RGM.
You are in a very small minority -- even some feminist blogs are objectifying Anna in a manner similar to CNN. But not here. Again, nicely done.

RGM said...

That's an interesting switch in the headline, I think that I only saw the latter one in the afternoon. It's a good point you raise because I sincerely doubt that too many people actually *cared* about her well-being in life. I've seen a few comments in some general discussion areas and it's pretty obvious that people don't care about someone who they variously categorize as a "whore," "slut," and all the other cheery terms that people use when they hate women.

Thanks Kim. I understand that some folks out there would castigate Anna Nicole for "trying too hard" to fit the form of femininity, participating in her own exploitation, that kind of thing, but it's very crass to be jumping on somebody in that fashion when they haven't even determined what it was that killed her. And, as I said somewhere, she's somebody's daughter. There's people out there who have lost their little girl, and there hasn't been an ounce of sympathy or empathy for that in teh Internetz.