Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Women and the Body
I have been lucky this quarter to have two directed readings. A directed reading is doing a lot of reading and than working one on one with a professor to talk about the reading. It's fantastic because than I don't have to go to class!! As of now I am working with the concepts of body, theology, and advertising. The other is the Christian perspective to divide the secular from the sacred. The two are starting to merge themselves together which couldn't make me happier.
Women's issues and the church are rarely merged together and when they are they have a specific women's ministry that usually talks about domestic home issues or raising children. I usually don't fit in that category because I am a horrible domestic and my womb is not full or have ever been full with children. Me aside, the issues I have been reading about has made me look at the world around me, and specifically women on television, a bit differently.
I am getting over being sick so Sunday evening I spent the day with books and my couch. It was a lovely day but I need distraction and hence the glory of television. The public kind...I don't receive or pay for cable. The portrayal of women are interesting. I think the jog is up on the fact that thin is in and there is only one certain kind of woman so they (as in the TV people) will put brown hair white woman, black woman, or hispanic woman in the place of the enduring blonde but the issues stay the same. Who is prettier, what is the woman doing, where is she working, what are the main issues? Often times I see the women dealing with petty things (or what I what I see is petty) like getting their hair done, nails re-polished. The issue is who is the man in their life. Beauty and the Geek, Americas Next Top Model, Deal or No Deal...what is the common function of the show? What are these women doing? and how are they succeeding? Across the line women are paid to be beautiful..
In one of my books I read the phrase, something of which I will paraphrase, as women have in the past not had authority with their words so their authority has been moved over to their body. Their body is what gave them power. Are we manipulating the body still today? Are we still finding the authority or even worth in a woman for the look of their body or the work of their hands, the brilliance of their thoughts? and when a woman is brilliant she is usually white, thin, and characteristically pretty.
Are we really moving forward with women's issues or are we stagnant? I will let you be the judge.