feb 26 The Cult of Femininity .pdf

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York University
Human Rights and Equity Studies
HREQ 1920
Elizabeth Brule

▯ 26 The Cult of Femininity Readings: Alison Jacques, “You Can Run but You Can’t Hide: The Incorporation of Riot Grrrl into Mainstream Culture,” pp. 332-336; • P.332 • Punk feminist girls “riot grrrl” • Revolution girl style now is basically an angrier more urgent version of the second wave feminist assertion that sisterhood is powerful Springing from the male dominated terrain of punk (and ale dominated society at large),riot • grrrl promoted female empowerment, expression an girl love, and gave voice to many womens experiences that have traditionally been silenced • Riot grrl opposed media coverage with a vehemence that verged on paranoia • Its revolution was limited to those in the know • Riot grrrl was subject to this process of incorporation despite its attempt to resists • RG emerged as an american based movement comprised of young female punks who were fed up with the overwhelming maleness of punk rock, as well as being feminists who were fed up with sexism in general • Their band lyrics and other writing themed on sexual abuse, oppression and body image • They took the original punk do-it-yourself approach to music making, encouraging female peers to pick up instruments and form bands • They were overwhelmingly white, mostly middle class, many were college educated and a large portion identified as queer RG numbers were grossly over inflated by a media titillated by the notion of a teenage girl • army • One must consider the context from which subculture springs, as well as the context within which it is received by the mainstream, in order to avoid overstating its innovation--a tendency of early subculture theorists • P.333 • RG was a musical and political subculture, of punk rock and feminism • They were the first girls to deliberately and explicitly fuse the two realms with such an aggressive in your face style • Many riot grills were students or gratuities of college womens studies programs, as well as being daughters of seventies women libbers • Late 1980s women seemed positively charming to the media compared to angry black men • The most popular version of events is tht distorted or dismissive press coverage of RG eld the grills to establish a nationwide media blackout in 92-93 • If riot grrrl wants to raise feminist consciousness on a large scale, then it will have to negotiate a relation to the mainstream that does not merely relfy the opposition between mainstream an subculture • While feminist praxis ideally involves consciousness raising and the fostering of womens diverse voices, punk tends to be an insular scene with a high degree of subcultural capital and disdain for outsiders and commercial success • Punk promotes a strong DIY ethic that opens itself to amateurs feminism traditionally has been a vehicle primarily for educated, middle class, white women (like RG) Media felt riot grills were better seen and not heard • • P.334 • While mass production of girl themed tshirts represents the commodity for of incorporation, the display if words is a behavior with significant symbolic value and, as such, is linked to the ideological form • The man riot girl is deliberate manipulation of signs: the word riot implies protest and aggression the word girl describes female childhood and is condescending when used to refer to a grown woman; the transformed word grrrl literally includes a growl that turns the sugar and spice connotations of girl upside down • After initial reports on RG itself, the popular press used grrrl to refer to an indent noisy (white) female rock musicians • The very word with which a subculture had named its defiance was redefined to encompass mass public femaleness • Many grills used their bodies to convey bold statements in two ways: first thought punk fashion irony and the juxtaposition of gendered signs and second, through writing politically loaded words such as rape, shame, prophet and slut on their arms and midriffs P.335 • • Tshirts have long been popular forums for political slogans and advertisements alike • Giese argues that the wearers of such tshirts are political in that they ar
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