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May 13 2007

More blaming from the stars

You Lindsay Lohan fans will be overjoyed to hear that, now that she’s 20 years old and all grown up, she’s going pro.

What’s that? You haven’t read a People magazine in a dentist’s office lately? Lindsay Lohan is an American “aspiration figure,” a Hollywood kinderwhore on the Britney Spears model, an object of great interest to teenage girls. That’s because currently Hollywood media are exploiting her as a teen powerslut. She wears big sunglasses, dates rock stars, and has ‘feuds’ with other powersluts. Now she is in a grownup movie, so pervs can watch the sexyvirgin get what’s coming to her.

“In the movie, called “I Know Who Killed Me,” Lindsay will play a pole dancing stripper who ends up being kidnapped and tortured; to top off this grusome [sic] menu, her character also gets her legs cut off.” [cite]

Lohan felt obliged to inform David Letterman, who otherwise might not have made the intellectual leap, that the above-mentioned scenario is “scary and really dark.”

I made this unpleasant discovery via a site called, oxymoronically, ThinkFashion, when a blamer sent in a link to another of ThinkFashion’s features. This was a blog item hailing the demise of a Dolce & Gabbana print ad. The ad, which ran in Esquire until it was deemed too “controversial”, depicts a crowd of half-naked greased dudes sexually assaulting a supine woman (also greased). The woman’s face is, like all fashion faces, vacant as a corpse’s, but her body obligingly arches toward the rapist, so we can simultaneously admire her expensive black spandex swimsuit and stiletto heels, and enjoy a little gay-men-on-strung-out-model action.

“Dolce & Gabbana* insist that the ad was never meant to be controversial and that it represented an erotic dream; a sexual game.”

Sure, if by “erotic sexual game” they mean “rape porn enacted by sociopathic androids.” I do not say that there absolutely cannot exist a stylized representation of predation and acquiescence that somehow contains philosophic value (although I have never seen one yet), but this is beyond even the banal old “violence = sex = glamour.” But I gotta say, those ad fucks know their shit; the detachment expressed in the photo is excruciatingly non-human, which of course makes it a perfect advertisement for high-priced, self-destructive femininity accessories.

In a patriarchy, where clothing is used to announce one’s status on the sexbot continuum — i.e. the degree of capitulation to dudely fetishes — it only makes sense to use the pornocracy to sell clothes that one wears to the Self-Loathing Ball.
________________________
* Because “ThinkFashion” is consumerist code for “buy stuff that you can’t quite afford but which will identify you as a member of the upper middle class,” on their website clicking on the words ‘Dolce & Gabbana’ sends you to a page where you can get “Dolce Gabbana For Less.”

45 comments

  1. Shakes

    Ugh. That’s worse than this one: http://www.joystiq.com/media/2006/04/adcritic_hitman_pcgamer_BIG.jpg
    (Seen at http://www.joystiq.com last year)

  2. pisaquari

    “enjoy a little gay-men-on-strung-out-model action”
    -There are no words.

    I used to be obsessed with watching Fashion TV in middle school. There I witnessed for the first time (unbeknownst to my feeble mind, yet) that gay men can hate me too. And not only can they hate me , for which throwing up lunch to fit into one of their thousand$ doily skirts isn’t enough, they can also slap my ass, make sexual remarks, harshly critique my body, grab and pull at my clothes like a doll, all whilst selling my image to the patriachy (and roll in the dough thenceforth).

    Perhaps off topic, but I do believe this whole homosexual- male-designer-to-female-model relationship started the “gay friend” trend (yes, trend). Women pining for a gay man’s attention was equated with high fashion, super-salivating-sexiness.

    D&G is no different fromy my example above. That they would wax erotic-esoteric over selling the same old thing in the same old glitter lotion while playing the pseudo-cosmonauts further validates TF’s point that “men hate you” is for ALL orientations.

  3. scoobs

    pisaquari, of course gay men can by misogynists, as can women across sexual orientations, but your generalizations a bit much for me. Gay men a diverse lot, and many of my acquaintance “get” feminism pretty well. Also some of them are even bigger slobs than me.

    Lohan has been manipulated and exploited since childhood. More of the same until she is deemed to have “lost her looks” no doubt.

  4. pisaquari

    “Gay men a diverse lot, and many of my acquaintance “get” feminism pretty well.”
    As I know as well, having run the gamut of such acquaintances myself. My post was not to limit the possibilites but to highlight those most damaging. Of course not all homo to hetero relationships are based off of such destruction. But the friendships rooted in the trendy-ness aspect I was connecting to the high fashion world.
    I hope I have clarified.

  5. MedeaOnCrack

    More or less because I can’t afford to be anything else, I’m something of a luddite. But today I praise and love technology because it made it possible for me to boot up, log on to IBTP and read this. Gem after gem. Every day a new favourite. So far, this is today’s.

    “In a patriarchy, where clothing is used to announce one’s status on the sexbot continuum — i.e. the degree of capitulation to dudely fetishes — it only makes sense to use the pornocracy to sell clothes that one wears to the Self-Loathing Ball.”

  6. MedeaOnCrack

    You have nothing to apologize for pisaquari. You’ve nailed it. Let us not spoil this spring day with another whatabouttehmenz thread.

  7. tinfoil hattie

    I second you, Medea. Or I will have to admonish the menz, as my son used to say to me mid-lecture when he was 2 years old: “Stop talking to me.”

  8. Candice Morgan

    “The debate rages over whether or not this image represents an artistic interpretation of a sexual fantasy, or if it just glorifies rape.”

    Okay, but the sexual fantasy is a rape fantasy, which, by the very means of being a fantasy, glorifies rape. So, rape is rape. What’s there to debate?

    And here I thought the pornocracy prided itself on its logic.

  9. mia

    I’m a long-time fan who is de-lurking to say that this past week’s posts have been some of the most memorable ever. Thank you to the hundredth power, Twisty, for your ongoing awesomeness.

  10. Elimy

    Indeed, Twisty is particularly on fire this week. Unfortunately, the patriarchy spews forth plenty of highly blame-able material on a daily basis.

  11. Valkyrie

    Speaking of fashion, porn & young women there’s an ad in the very front of my city’s “alternative” weekly that made my jaw drop. It’s an American Apparel ad featuring a girl who looks no older than 12 in a pose that looks to me exactly like what child pornography must look like (haven’t seen any thank goddess). I won’t even try to describe it but if one of you young computer savvy whippersnappers is able to e-mail a copy to Twisty perhaps we could discuss, vent, write letters, whatever. The model is “Lauren” and she’s in a swimsuit – one image of the front, one of the back with child-like attributes empasized in both. Yuck.

    Happy Mother’s Day creepy advertising company. IBTP.

  12. lawbitch

    In my youth, I didn’t have the resources to buy “self-destructive feminity accessories.” By the time I have the resources to buy them, I was too smart to buy into it.

    I kid you not when I relate seeing an eight year old girl carrying a designer purse at my son’s school. Little girls wearing Juicy designer clothing (who wants their daughter to have “juicy” on their ass?). Future sexbots in training. Truly frightening.

    It seems like the fashion industry has become increasingly worse towards women. I personally think that’s a good thing. The more offensive and irrelevant the fashion industry becomes to “ordinary” women, the more energy and resources available for important issues.

  13. Dr. Helmet Breath

    Over at Feministing today, I was treated to a lovely description what is certain to be the latest in hot, sweaty, boner-inducing films for drooling misogynists, a precious gem titled “Captivity” (starring Elisha Cuthbert as a model who is kidnapped and subsequently tortured. SEXACIOUS!)

    Hot Daddy Christ, with recent flicks like “Black Snake Moan”, “Captivity”, and “I Know Who Killed Me” (to only name a few) men are practically screaming from the tops of the fucking hills that they hate us.

  14. Dr. Helmet Breath

    Yeesh, my first sentence should read “description OF what is…”.

    I suck at computers.

  15. Catherine Martell

    Valkyrie: Dov Charney, the dude in charge of American Apparel, is quite the patriarch. He’s notorious for pinning up Penthouse pin-ups in the stores; furthermore, he appears to be a magnet for sexual harassment suits. Not exactly sure what the outcomes of those suits have been, but there’s definitely something fishy about his whole MO, as this article – from a very patriarchy-friendly source – indicates.
    http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/content/05_26/b3939108_mz017.htm

  16. ladoctorita

    Valkyrie,

    I believe this is the ad you’re referring to:

    http://www.americanapparel.net/presscenter/ads/vice07041.html

    Sorry, I’m too much of an amateur blogger to know how to make a handy little link. And besides, I need to go throw up now.

  17. ladoctorita

    Ooh, it linked itself! Computers are so nifty.

  18. kate

    What a wonderful segue way from the previous thread, in which we discuss how women’s consent hinges solely on the perception of the man. Thus men have absolutely no use for it, as to them, sex with a woman is only a matter of conquest, the degrees of which may vary depending upon the resistance of the target.

    We have this fine example to remind quite boldly that resistance only exists as a means to an end, which end of course, lies solely with the man.

    Of course the dominant class loves to put out these type of images, along with porn and then state that since women still buy their junk and look at their pictures, this means they consent and therefore no oppression exists. Its all in our silly minds.

  19. kate

    Also, I am sick and goddmaned tired of parents who exploit their children in order to feed their unmet needs for attention and approval. It should be illegal dammit.

    In addition, I do not watch teevee particularly because I am fed up with watching the public approve and soak up men like Lettermen who serve as nothing more than full-on advertisements to continue exploitation of women and affirm sickening boy-club behavior.

    I also can’t afford the cable bill right now, but that’s another matter entirely. If I were rich, I’d just be too damn busy.

    Anyway, thanks to you and other bloggers twisty, I get plenty of reminders as to why I need not watch the pop culture in action.

  20. MoBridges

    Valkyrie, I think this must be the ad you saw:
    http://americanapparel.net/presscenter/ads/vice07041.html

    I’ve always found the American Apparel ad verite shit pretty damn vomit-inducing but, you’re right, this one is particularly rough. Yet, the company seem to enjoy a privileged status among folks who fancy themselves socially conscious. It’s as if their whole “made in america, sweatshop-free” policy puts them beyond reproach. American Apparel seems to exist as the last glittering hope that hipsters can shop guilt-free.

    According to their website, they were voted one of “the top ten most socially responsible brands” by college students in 2006. Even better, according to GQ, their underwear is “one of the 100 best things in the world right now” (and oh, what a list that must be). And while said hipsters wouldn’t dream of advocating the exploitation of workers, the exploitation of women is as familiar and comforting as 100% cotton US-made boxer-briefs.

  21. CannibalFemme

    On the swimsuit model: if you haven’t already read it, I wholeheartedly recommend Twisty’s ‘He Touched Me In My Special Gray Area’:

    http://blog.iblamethepatriarchy.com/2006/04/18/he-touched-my-special-gray-area/

    Yes, apparently violators have the right of way.

  22. edith

    Yeah, and now Lohan’s going through her a Kate Moss-like exposure for doing cocaine. Because we’re all supposed to be really, really shocked. I have a bad Us Weekly addiction that, somewhat ironically, started when I was working at a domestic violence shelter. Because you know, talking about personal stuff got too heavy, but everyone had something to say about Britney.

    I just think it’s sad that these actresses feel like in order to get “edgier” and “more grown-up” roles, they have to do stuff like this. Remember Natalie Portman in the fabulous “artsy” woman-hating “Closer”?

  23. Twisty

    It’s not just the kids. Remember when middle-aged Farrah Fawcett tried to resurrect her sexbot career by doing a Playboy spread? Now she’s in the magazines again, but only because she got cancer of the butt.

  24. BubbasNightmare

    What is about Closer that drives you nuts to watch it? The women are negatively portayed, and the men aren’t? No one in that film can leave well enough alone–everyone has to dig just deep enough to royally piss their partner off? Julia Roberts does that passive-aggressive crap she always does in her roles?

    Or my (least) favorite line–Clive Owen to Natalie Portman (I think):

    You women don’t understand the territory, because you are the territory.

    Sigh. IBTP (as usual).

  25. stekatz

    Lindsay Lohan is a trainwreck, and her publicist would not have it any other way.

    And Cristina Ricci in Black Snake Moan just screams I’m-In-A-Panic-Because-I’m-No-Longer-The-Young-Ingenue-So-I’d-Better-Do-Something-
    Sexy-Real-Quick-Before-My-Career-Takes-A-Complete-Nosedive.

    Reasons number 8345 and 8346 why we should never look to Hollywood for our role models.

  26. lawbitch

    Can you really get cancer of the butt?

    Lindsay is just the lastest flavor of the month. The Hollywood machine will eat her up, spit her out and move along to its next victim.

  27. Valkyrie

    That’s the ad. Bleechh – that Charney guy is a dick.

  28. MedeaOnCrack

    The exploitation of children and small Native and Asian women is what the AA ads looked like to me.

    Another reason to know how to sew.

  29. Frigga's Own

    American Apparel’s sweatshop free status is completely undeserved. The company does a lot of union busting to make sure that their employees don’t have access to safe working conditions, living wages, or healthcare benefits. Just because it’s made in America doesn’t mean it’s automatically guilt-free.

  30. LMYC

    The really creepy thing is that they are almost breeding their sexbot victims from the womb anymore. Their fave bombshells before at least had a snowball’s chance in hell; these people they’re running through now are started in on when they are 4 years old, or younger. Christ.

  31. Shakes

    There are a few interesting pieces about the hypocrisy and ickiness of American Apparel here: http://clamormagazine.org/issues/38/aa/

  32. scoobs

    American Apparel also has “web PR reps” like this chump:
    http://www.americanapparel.net/presscenter/dailyupdate/profile.asp?d=7

    This post is a particular, ah, fave:
    http://www.americanapparel.net/presscenter/dailyupdate/dailyUp.asp?d=7&t=201

    All those unsolicited supportive comments must really make his work worthwhile, though. I know I go to corporate blogs about clothing to reassure garment manufacturers they are cool at least one morning per week.

  33. slythwolf

    Even their assertion that it’s “just” supposed to be a fantasy reveals their allegiance to the patriarchy. In a post-patriarchal society, nobody would have fantasies about gang rape.

  34. Moira

    I am becoming less and less convinced that my not having the ability to set things (and people!) on fire with my mind is a net benefit for the world. I promise I’d only use my powers for good, and to make my morning commute easier.

    Oh, and any time it might be funny. And I’d totally win cosplay contests with my Witch Hunter Robin thing. It’d be great.

  35. pisaquari

    LMYC:”these people they’re running through now are started in on when they are 4 years old, or younger.”

    Yes, and can you just not wait for the ever sexy, young, and *fresh look* of the zygote to catch on (“look at the curves on that cell!”). If we normalize fetal-specimens-as-sexy long enough will ultra sound be the new porn medium? And will the men and women who watch it still be free of judgement because *judging* people is just so not cutting-edge-liberal-cool of us that questioning such motives would be looked on as prudish? And if I am the kind of woman to become pregnant will a baby bump be the new “well she was dressing sexy” defense for the “couldn’t help but rape the silly slut” tripe?
    Seriously.
    I’d call this satire if I had more faith in humans but our pawn-nature is disturbing and apparent everywhere. Instead I read blogs and wait till an Atwood novel fleshes.

  36. Twisty

    “Yes, and can you just not wait for the ever sexy, young, and *fresh look* of the zygote to catch on”

    I don’t think this’ll catch on. Don’t forget, it has to be big enough to prong a full-size bluevein swayback throbber into.

  37. Antoinette Niebieszczanski

    Yes, lawbitch, you can indeed get (and die from, as did my mother) colorectal cancer.

  38. Mandos

    “aspiration figure”

    That is a hilarious term. It could have been an industry euphemism for a dangerous vacuum cleaner or something.

  39. lawbitch

    D’oh! Colon cancer = butt cancer. Somehow, I imagined a large tumor sticking out on her butt. LOL! I really wonder about myself at times. Sleep deprivation does wierd things. I blame the lil’ people at my house who don’t let me sleep.

  40. Silence

    Women in Hollywood get to play the either the prostitutes or Dustin Hoffman’s wife in fims until they’re twenty-five. Then they turn thirty and they’re too old to be married to Dustin Hoffman and they have to content themselves with playing Mel Gibson’s mother instead. Flashing their cleavage for Playboy might win them a few weeks of attention, mostly focusing on the quality of thie jugs and somments about what old whores they are. In the meantime, Tom Cruise will have earned fifty million for belching on Entertainment Tonight.

    Fuck it all. On a related note, Pan’s Labyrinth is coming to DVD this Tuesday. This is one of those rare movies that you actually want to see, so grab a copy.

  41. yankee transplant

    The patriarchy does continue to fuel Twisty’s fire. Thank the good lard that she’s here to call bullshit on it all.

  42. hedonistic

    Moira: I can TOTALLY set things and people on fire by just thinking reeeeeeeaaaaaaal hard – in my dreams, that is! It’s actually kinda scary.

    Anyhoo, someone needs to do a comic strip about radfems who inexplicably grow radioactive laser eyes. I’d TOTALLY buy it! The story line isn’t too weird; after all, a whole series of movies was made about some regular dude bitten by a spider.

  43. LMYC

    Silence, you’ve just encapsulated why I despise movies and TV.

  44. Silence

    My apologies for the horrendous typos above. I’d also like to add that while actresses are allowed to play the prostitutes or the pretty half-nude body the psychokiller gets to carve up in loving, lurid detail, they’re making the tiniest fraction of the moolah the dudely heros can pull down.

    I try not to get cranky about young women starlets. They’re victims too. They earn money and fame by playing the patriarchy’s game and they imagine they actually have power. Instead they gets cameras in their faces and the media prying into every detail of their privates lives. They can’t enjoy a fudge sundae without someone catching it on film and running headlines like “Btritteny Spears Porks out in Paris” on the front of some rag. I’m over thirty, cynical, and retiring and I wouldn’t behave well with so much public attention. Why should I expect it from young women who think they’ve been given the world on a plate? Especially when you know they’re going to turn from the hawt young beauties into the faded old cows before they’re thirty. The Hollywood machine is crueler than the damn guillotine.

    And A-fucking-men, LMYC. I despise TV. I like the movies I like, but that’s a small and very snobbish category.

  45. Jezebella

    Word, Silence: if paparazzi had followed ME around in my early twenties, right after my divorce, they would’ve had a field day. “Breaking news: Jezebella eats cheese fries at 6 am after drinking all night in filthy dive bar!”

    Thank bog none of that second adolescence is on film or video, because it wasn’t pretty. I probably looked like as much of an idiot as Britney, only with a lot less money to play with.

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