Tag Archives: stereotypes

Rob Lowe Talks Pretty People Problems

“There’s this unbelievable bias and prejudice against quote-unquote good-looking people, that they can’t be in pain or they can’t have rough lives or be deep or interesting. They can’t be any of the things that you long to play as an actor. I’m getting to play those parts now and loving it. When I was a teen idol, I was so goddamn pretty I wouldn’t have taken myself seriously. … [T]here’s a historical bias that good-looking people are not funny.”

Cindy Crawford isn’t the only attractive person who has suffered from the stereotype that all pretty people are dumb. The very pretty Rob Lowe opened up to The New York Times Magazine about his second memoir, in which he describes the difficulties he has faced trying to be a ‘serious actor’ because of his Neutrogena-commercial good looks. Again, it’s hard to feel bad for someone who is essentially complaining about how attractive he is … but you know, I kinda get it. It sucks to be stereotyped and put in a box, no matter what that box is. Rob Lowe happens to be a great actor: he has done everything from “The West Wing” to “Behind The Candelabra” to “Parks & Recreation” to made-for-TV movies on every channel. It’s obvious the guy has range and he’s easy on the eyes. [New York Times Magazine] [Image via WENN]

Laverne Cox Refused To Play Reality TV’s “Angry Black Woman” Stereotype

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“I remember being really conscious of not wanting to fight with another black woman on camera. I did an interview and the producers were like, “Well, this [other black woman on the show] said this about you. What do you have to say about that?” And I said I’m not fighting with another black woman on TV. Even during my elimination episode, when it came down to myself and another black woman, my mother — after watching — said, “Why didn’t you defend yourself?” And I just didn’t want to give television the satisfaction of seeing two black women going at it. We see that so much.”

“Orange Is The New Black” star Laverne Cox is the subject of a lengthly profile over at Buzzfeed, where she gives a fascinating walk-through of her long road to stardom. After moving to New York City to attend Marymount Manhattan College, Cox worked in nightclubs and acted in student films. Then, in 2008, she got cast on P. Diddy’s reality show, “I Want To Work For Diddy.” Believe it or not, reality TV was a positive experience for her. She credits Diddy for giving her exposure on national television, although she is very realistic and measured about what “a dubious distinction” it is to be “the first black trans woman to appear on a reality TV show.” One matter of principle for Cox, she explained, was refusing to play into the “angry black woman” stereotype that reality TV producers tried to coax out of her and instead held her tongue in situations where she otherwise might have spoken up. In a pop cultural landscape with brats like Justin Bieber and Lindsay Lohan making headlines, it’s refreshing to see a thoughtful, principled actress succeeding. [BuzzFeed]

What Do We Think Of TIME‘s Hillary Cover?

hillary time main image

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has not yet said one way or the other whether she intends to run again for president in 2016. But that hasn’t stopped the chattering classes from dissecting every single item related to a “Hillary ’16″ run ad nauseum. The latest iteration is the TIME magazine cover this week: a coverline reading “Can Anyone Stop Hillary?” over a photo-illustration of a huge, high-heeled woman in a pantsuit stepping past a miniature man who jumps out of the way.

See the full image after the jump: Keep reading »

When It Comes To Gender Stereotyping, Pink Is Not The Problem

When It Comes To Gender Stereotyping, Pink Is Not The Problem

In his analysis of the problems (real and falsely perceived) with the “pink aisle,” MovieBob has some things to say about “The Hunger Games”—namely that it reinforces an outdated notion of male = good and female = bad by giving its heroine stereotypically masculine traits and the Capitol stereotypically feminine ones. Watch MovieBob explain why pink is not the problem on The Mary Sue…

The Soapbox: Mourning The Death Of Trayvon Martin & Reevaluating Racial Politics In America

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As I sit in my living room, the familiar sound of rotating blades of a helicopter whoosh above me. I can hear them, hovering. They’re following the Oakland protestors who have taken to the streets outraged by the not guilty verdict in the trial of George Zimmerman. “No justice, no peace,” they shout as they embark on a mile-long march for justice. This custom is a byproduct Oakland’s long legacy of dissent. To outsiders signs that say “Fuck The Police” seem entirely unrelated to the trial, but the relationship between the department of justice and local law enforcement is one that Oaklanders understand very well.

Like Oakland, the rest of the country is in mourning. People everywhere are trying to reconcile how no one is being held accountable for the untimely death of a teenage boy. We’ve taken to the streets, the Internet, to church and community, but one thing that social media has made apparent is that we’re mourning for very different reasons.

For many, we mourn because this case crystallizes how the legal system does not provide equal protection of the laws for everyone. Some mourn because the not guilty verdict means Martin’s parents will not be vindicated in their son’s death. Others mourn because another young boy of color was robbed of his life and it could have just as easily been their son. And of course, some don’t mourn at all — the death of a black boy is insignificant to their life. Keep reading »

Can You Really Reverse Gender Stereotypes In Media?

Pretty ridiculous, hey?

A women’s studies class at the University of Saskatchewan made this provocative video which questions commonly perpetuated stereotypes about gender in media. Pointing out that women are often in a subjugated position — turned into objects themselves, along with whatever object they’re supposedly selling, placed in prone, sexually provocative poses — the video connects violent images in the media with their real-life consequences. From the beginning of advertising, there have been ads that have capitalized on female sexuality, gender stereotypes and violence against women. (Seriously, some of these ads would make even Pete Campbell blush.) While it’s tough to say just how much advertising is responsible, it’s pretty clear that violence against women is rampant and more women than ever are going to extreme lengths to pursue a “perfect” body. And even men are not immune — as the video notes, media images have been linked to a recent increase in depression among men, too. Keep reading »

The Soapbox: I Don’t Want Your Yellow Fever

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As a kid, I was used to standing out for lots of reasons, like my “Star Wars” obsession or the black eyeliner and vampire chic that made up my high school wardrobe.

I never expected my race to be one of those reasons.

I grew up as an Asian-American among Asian-Americans, so I certainly wasn’t used to being viewed as what we English Lit majors call “the exotic other.” Even when I went to college in St. Louis, it wasn’t that much of a problem. I did go on a date with a guy who went on about his trip to Japan and the extreme “femininity” of its women, but that was about it.

It wasn’t until I moved to the UK that it kicked in: men – and it was always men – shouting “NEE HOW MA” or “KOH-NEE-CHEE-WAAAH” or even “Me love you long time!” as I walked down the street; starting conversations with “Soooo … are you from … China?” before they’d even asked my name; playing up their supposed interest in Asian culture while going on about how “feminine” and beautiful Asian women are. Keep reading »

WSJ’s “Office Mom” Piece Has Some Problems

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The New York Times is getting a run for its money in the dubiously-credible lifestyle articles department. Today’s contender: the Wall Street Journal‘s ”Who’s Your Office Mom?” which continues on another page with the statement-making headline, “Every Office Needs A Mom.”

Really, WSJ, really? Keep reading »

Why Are People Shocked That A Pretty, Blonde, 16-Year-Old Girl Is A Genius?

lauren marbe

There’s a plot for a romantic comedy in here somewhere: a 16-year-old British girl named Lauren Marbe has scored 161 on a MENSA test, ranking her intelligence higher than Stephen Hawking, Bill Gates and Albert Einstein. But people are shocked – shocked! – at Lauren Marbe’s genius intelligence because she’s a blonde girl from Essex (which is apparently the Seaside Heights of Britain) who loves fake tanning, getting manis, and reality TV. Keep reading »

Howard University Med Students Petition Bravo To Cancel “Married To Medicine”

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Med students from Howard University College Of Medicine started a Change.org petition to urge Bravo to cancel a new reality show, “Married To Medicine.” The reality TV program set to debut on March 24 portrays the ups-and-downs for black women doctors and doctors’ wives/socialites in Atlanta. Keep reading »

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