Feminist Media

Taking Back the Media

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Mulan ≠ Anti-femininity

lipsredasroses:

image

I’m going to write a full review of Mulan later but I want to address the notion that Mulan is somehow anti-femininity. I’ve seen this argument crop up in feminist circles and anytime anyone addresses good role models. Mulan usually comes up because she is “anti-feminine” and a “tomboy.” After rewatching the movie I don’t get it.

The first argument is usually “she hated her matchmakers dress.” She wears the dress throughout the first part of the movie. The dress itself honestly does not bother her. It’s the whole idea of being a “respectable bride” that Mulan is against because she knows she wouldn’t be good at it. Once the soldiers finds out she is a woman and she is alone she confesses she wanted to join the army not so much to save her father but to prove she could do something right. In the beginning of the movie you see Mulan fail at every task to become a “respectable bride.” She is late to get ready to meet the matchmaker. She is last in line to line up to meet the matchmaker. She speaks out of turn. She ruins the tea and sets the matchmakers butt on fire. She failed at everything involving marriage. She also seems rather indifferent to the whole idea. She went through with the matchmaker to bring honor to her family not because she wanted it. The whole scene doesn’t even show Mulan is a tomboy or anti-femininity. All it shows is Mulan is not comfortable with the matchmaker and marriage.

The next argument is that Mulan is a soldier. Mulan runs away to join the army and is clearly very masculine because she does that. Except not really. By the end of the training she is stronger than the rest of the men.  She ends up being a very good soldier because she is quick on her feet and can plan ahead under pressure (unlike Shang). Like with the matchmaker, she doesn’t fit in with the other soldiers. She finds them gross and disgusting. She makes those comments throughout her time as a soldier. During the song “A Girl Worth Fighting For” she is utterly baffled by the women the guys find desirable. She is saddened when they turn her down when she says she wants a girl who has a brain and always speaks her mind. She doesn’t truly shine as a soldier until the end of the movie when she is saving China as a woman.

Which brings me to my main point/argument for why I don’t believe Mulan is anti-femininity or a tomboy. She is most comfortable when she finds herself at the end of the movie. She saves China as a woman. She is not pretending to be a man anymore but herself. She dresses up Ling,  Chein-Po, and Yao as women to save the Emperor. She defeats Shan-Yu with a fan. She uses the fan to grab his sword and keep him on the roof. She defines femininity for herself. She defines who she is and brings honor to her family, which is what she wanted throughout the movie, by being herself. She learned she didn’t have to be anyone but herself to make herself and her family proud.

She is not anti-femininity because she is more comfortable in armor. That is just not true. She is as comfortable in her matchmaking dress as she is in armor. What she wears does not define her. I think its ridiculous that Disney markets her in her matchmaking dress because she wore that dress when she was least comfortable with herself. She should be in the final dress of the movie, like all the other princesses, because that is the dress she wore when she saved China and was most comfortable with herself. I think it would be cool if she was marketed more as Ping but I would still be much happier if she was wearing the final dress in the movie.

With all that being said, I’ll write up a full review of the movie sometime this week. It’s one of my favorites.

112 notes

Hey Disney,

lipsredasroses:

I am a big fan. A bit pissed that Walt Disney claimed the League of Women Voters was a communist organization and needed to be stopped. But he did recant that claim and apologize. I’m also a bit pissed he thinks being a misogynist is a character trait. He even said that was Grumpy’s only character trait when explaining who the dwarfs were. I get you had a sexist problem from the very beginning. I guess you inherited that from Uncle Walt.

But that is not what I want to talk to you about. My problem is how you will remove Jack Sparrow from WDW and DL for being sexually harassed/harassed but wont remove the princesses (and I’m sure Tinkerbell) for the same reason. I am very happy that you took the mistreated of Jack Sparrow very seriously. No one should ever be sexually harassed. No one should be stalked, harassed, or made to feel uncomfortable in the parks, including our beloved characters. This also includes the princesses. Ariel is one of the most harassed princesses. Yes, she is one of the most beloved but that does not give anyone the right to stalk or sexually harass her. It does not give anyone the right to touch her breast or body without her permission. She is a (mer)person and deserves the same amount of respect as Jack Sparrow. When people are being inappropriate towards her or any of the other characters, they should be removed from the park so they cannot be sexually harassed. You wouldn’t want her to pack up her things and go back to Atlantica would you? A mermaid can only take so much. After all, Sebastian did tell her the human world was a mess. Do you think its right that your guest are proving him right?

While we are on the topic of sexual harassment, your policy to blame your women cast members who are sexually harassed, sexually assaulted, and raped are absolutely disgusting. Uncle Walt being our crazy uncle who says the most outlandish things is one thing. A company that allows sexual assaults to happen on their property and claim to be the “happiest place on earth” is just bullshit and inappropriate. The fact you have double standards between your male and female cast members is disgusting. It is wrong, illegal, and immoral. You should be ashamed of yourselg. I get you are about making money but how much money do you really think you can make if you alienate half of the worlds population?

All of this being said, you need to reevaluation your priorities if you think it is okay to let sexual assaults and rapes go unchecked on your property. You are far from the happiest place on earth until you get your shit together.

Love,

A very concerned and pissed off fan.

65 notes

lipsredasroses:

I’m really hurting for cash and I need to sell these pins now. The whole lot is $50 with shipping or its $5 per pin plus $2 shipping. I would prefer to sell them all because I needed the money yesterday.
Here is my information on Disney pins Forum. My email for dizpins is lisaoar@yahoo.com. Please help a girl out. I will love you forever if you buy pins. If you buy all the pins, I’ll throw a surprise LE pin in the mix!

lipsredasroses:

I’m really hurting for cash and I need to sell these pins now. The whole lot is $50 with shipping or its $5 per pin plus $2 shipping. I would prefer to sell them all because I needed the money yesterday.

Here is my information on Disney pins Forum. My email for dizpins is lisaoar@yahoo.com. Please help a girl out. I will love you forever if you buy pins. If you buy all the pins, I’ll throw a surprise LE pin in the mix!

1,570 notes

Bechdel Test & the Disney Princess Movies!

lipsredasroses:

edwardshallow:

lipsredasroses:

Do they all pass the Bechdel Test? The answer is no. To pass the test the movie has to meet these three simple criteria:

  1. Have two women in the movie with names. 
  2. They have to talk to each other.
  3. They have to talk about something other than men. 

Every movie should pass this test but it does not. In movies about a female lead, you would think every single movie would pass but it does not. Here is a break down of the movies and whether or not they pass. 

1. Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs released in 1937. It does pass. When Snow White meets the Old Hag when she comes to visit the OH asks if she is alone and what she is cooking. Part of their conversation does not involve men. It is a brief scene but it is the only time in the movie when Snow White talks to another woman. 

2. Cinderella released in 1950. The movie does pass. Cinderella interacts with her step mother and sisters throughout the movie. The step sisters interact and talk to their mom throughout the movie and they talk with each other. The movie passes with flying colors since the men in the movie are background characters or animals. 

3. Sleeping Beauty released in 1959. The movie also passes with flying colors. Aurora talks with the fairy godmothers. The fairies talk to Maleficent and talk to each other. The fairy godmothers and Aurora only speak about Phillip near the middle and end of the movie. Aurora’s mother does talk to Maleficent but the mother is not given a name in the movie. 

4. The Little Mermaid released in 1989. The movie actually does pass, kind of. Ariel also talks to Ursula about whether or not she can turn her into a human. However, the whole scene is about her becoming a human and meeting Eric. Ariels sisters do talk in the movie but they are either singing, talking to Triton, or trying to talk to Ariel. 

5. Beauty & the Beast released in 1991. The movie does pass, just barely. Mrs. Potts does have a conversation with Belle that is not about the Beast. The conversation Belle has with the wardrobe involves a conversation about the Beast. The Wardrobe is trying to convince Belle the Beast isn’t all bad. 

6. Aladdin released in 1992. The movie does not pass. Jasmine is the only woman in the movie with a name. Her pet tiger is even a dude. The movie also is guilty of the Smurfette Principle because Jasmine is the only woman with a name. 

7. Pocahontas released in 1995. The movie does pass. Pocahontas has many conversations with Grandmother Willow that are not about either John Smith or Kocoum. She also has conversations with Nakoma that are not about men, but they are more brief than the conversations with Grandmother Willow. 

8. Mulan released in 1998. The movie also passes but just barely. Mulan has conversations with her mom and the Match Maker that does not involve men. Throughout the majority of the movie Mulan is the only woman in the movie. 

9. Princess and the Frog released in 2009. The movie passes. Tiana has conversations with her mom and Charlotte that do not involve men. She talks to both women about her restaurant. She also talks to Mama Odie about her gumbo. 

10. Tangled released in 2010. The movie does pass because Rapunzel talks to Gothel about the outside world, seeing the lanterns, and being the lost princess, at the end. However, Gothel is the only woman Rapunzel talks to throughout the entire movie. She does not talk to her mom at the end of the movie. 

11. Brave released in 2012. The movie passes with flying colors. Merida and her mom communicate throughout the movie about many topics that do not involve the suitors. 

So over all, all the movies but Aladdin pass. Some pass on really brief interactions with other women. Usually the lead female character is one of the few women in the movie with names. Snow White, Little Mermaid, Beauty & the Beast, and Mulan are the only movies that just barely pass.  Even when Disney movies are about women, that doesn’t mean there will be a huge female presence in the movie. 

With the addition of:
4. “For longer than 30 seconds”

How many pass?

Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Pocahontas, Princess and the Frog, and Tangled would all easily pass. 5 of them would pass with flying colors.

Snow White would pass, Snows interaction with the Old Hag lasts for a few minutes. They only discuss the prince for a short period of time in their interaction. Little Mermaid would also pass since the scene with Ursula is also a few minutes long. They only discuss Eric for about half the scene. The other half Ursula is explaining how powerful she is, Ariel telling Ursula she has nothing to offer as payment, etc. In Mulan, Mulan talks with other women about things other than men. Mulan talks to her mom before she meets the match maker. Mulans mother and grandmother discuss Mulan in the beginning of the movie. The first half of the movie involves mostly women and they all interact with one another. So these three would pass with the 30 second requirement.

The only movie that might not pass with the 30 second requirement is Beauty & the Beast. While I just rewatched the movie, there is a good chance the scenes Belle talks with the women would not make it to 30 seconds.

1,570 notes

Bechdel Test & the Disney Princess Movies!

lipsredasroses:

Do they all pass the Bechdel Test? The answer is no. To pass the test the movie has to meet these three simple criteria:

  1. Have two women in the movie with names. 
  2. They have to talk to each other.
  3. They have to talk about something other than men. 

Every movie should pass this test but it does not. In movies about a female lead, you would think every single movie would pass but it does not. Here is a break down of the movies and whether or not they pass. 

1. Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs released in 1937. It does pass. When Snow White meets the Old Hag when she comes to visit the OH asks if she is alone and what she is cooking. Part of their conversation does not involve men. It is a brief scene but it is the only time in the movie when Snow White talks to another woman. 

2. Cinderella released in 1950. The movie does pass. Cinderella interacts with her step mother and sisters throughout the movie. The step sisters interact and talk to their mom throughout the movie and they talk with each other. The movie passes with flying colors since the men in the movie are background characters or animals. 

3. Sleeping Beauty released in 1959. The movie also passes with flying colors. Aurora talks with the fairy godmothers. The fairies talk to Maleficent and talk to each other. The fairy godmothers and Aurora only speak about Phillip near the middle and end of the movie. Aurora’s mother does talk to Maleficent but the mother is not given a name in the movie. 

4. The Little Mermaid released in 1989. The movie actually does pass, kind of. Ariel also talks to Ursula about whether or not she can turn her into a human. However, the whole scene is about her becoming a human and meeting Eric. Ariels sisters do talk in the movie but they are either singing, talking to Triton, or trying to talk to Ariel. 

5. Beauty & the Beast released in 1991. The movie does pass, just barely. Mrs. Potts does have a conversation with Belle that is not about the Beast. The conversation Belle has with the wardrobe involves a conversation about the Beast. The Wardrobe is trying to convince Belle the Beast isn’t all bad. 

6. Aladdin released in 1992. The movie does not pass. Jasmine is the only woman in the movie with a name. Her pet tiger is even a dude. The movie also is guilty of the Smurfette Principle because Jasmine is the only woman with a name. 

7. Pocahontas released in 1995. The movie does pass. Pocahontas has many conversations with Grandmother Willow that are not about either John Smith or Kocoum. She also has conversations with Nakoma that are not about men, but they are more brief than the conversations with Grandmother Willow. 

8. Mulan released in 1998. The movie also passes but just barely. Mulan has conversations with her mom and the Match Maker that does not involve men. Throughout the majority of the movie Mulan is the only woman in the movie. 

9. Princess and the Frog released in 2009. The movie passes. Tiana has conversations with her mom and Charlotte that do not involve men. She talks to both women about her restaurant. She also talks to Mama Odie about her gumbo. 

10. Tangled released in 2010. The movie does pass because Rapunzel talks to Gothel about the outside world, seeing the lanterns, and being the lost princess, at the end. However, Gothel is the only woman Rapunzel talks to throughout the entire movie. She does not talk to her mom at the end of the movie. 

11. Brave released in 2012. The movie passes with flying colors. Merida and her mom communicate throughout the movie about many topics that do not involve the suitors. 

So over all, all the movies but Aladdin pass. Some pass on really brief interactions with other women. Usually the lead female character is one of the few women in the movie with names. Snow White, Little Mermaid, Beauty & the Beast, and Mulan are the only movies that just barely pass.  Even when Disney movies are about women, that doesn’t mean there will be a huge female presence in the movie. 

267 notes

lipsredasroses:

I swear to god if I read one more post saying “Merida didn’t care about fancy dresses and what not” I will scream. Neither did any of the other princesses. Sure, Cinderella wanted to go to the ball but she didn’t even make either dress she wore. Her mice friends made the first dress, which was an updated version of her mothers dress, and the second one her fairy godmother gave her. She spends seconds admiring the dress in the movie. I’d hardly count that as her only caring about her looks and fancy dresses. Then there was Aurora who admired her birthday present from the fairies. Lets be serious, none of the princesses gave 2 fucks about their looks. They had other things to worry about like finding out they were princesses, surviving abusive homes, figuring out how to save a loved one, and figuring out how to turn the idiot frog back into a prince.
The princess merchandise sold does NOT fit the personality of any of the princesses. None of the princesses were in their ball gowns for the majority of the movies. They are not marketed in the dresses they wore throughout the majority of their movies. I’m sorry but Belle is much happier/comfortable locked in a library with her books than dancing around a ball room. Ariel is much happier exploring than dancing in a gown not even found in her movie. Cinderella only wore the blue dress for maybe 5 minutes in the movie. Her work dress is what she wore for the majority of the movie. She is frankly more comfortable in “average” clothes. Aurora was happiest singing and dancing in the forest with Phillip, not dressed in her ball gown. Tiana is more comfortable cooking and running her restaurant not dressed in some ball gown. You know how big of a pain in the ass that dress would be in the kitchen? The only princesses whose outfits weren’t radically altered were Snow White and Rapunzel. If Pocahontas didn’t look like she went shopping at Forever 21, I’d add her to the list. The princess line up does nothing to market the characters from the movies. None of the princesses in that line up are how they are in the movies.
If you are going to focus on Mulan and Merida, you better focus on all the princesses. It is ridiculous that people don’t mention that none of the princesses would be comfortable in the roles Disney gives them in the princess line up. Disney strips all of the princesses of their personalities and makes them all the same. That is a fucking problem. That is not just a problem for 2 of the princesses, it is a problem for all 11 of them.

lipsredasroses:

I swear to god if I read one more post saying “Merida didn’t care about fancy dresses and what not” I will scream. Neither did any of the other princesses. Sure, Cinderella wanted to go to the ball but she didn’t even make either dress she wore. Her mice friends made the first dress, which was an updated version of her mothers dress, and the second one her fairy godmother gave her. She spends seconds admiring the dress in the movie. I’d hardly count that as her only caring about her looks and fancy dresses. Then there was Aurora who admired her birthday present from the fairies. Lets be serious, none of the princesses gave 2 fucks about their looks. They had other things to worry about like finding out they were princesses, surviving abusive homes, figuring out how to save a loved one, and figuring out how to turn the idiot frog back into a prince.

The princess merchandise sold does NOT fit the personality of any of the princesses. None of the princesses were in their ball gowns for the majority of the movies. They are not marketed in the dresses they wore throughout the majority of their movies. I’m sorry but Belle is much happier/comfortable locked in a library with her books than dancing around a ball room. Ariel is much happier exploring than dancing in a gown not even found in her movie. Cinderella only wore the blue dress for maybe 5 minutes in the movie. Her work dress is what she wore for the majority of the movie. She is frankly more comfortable in “average” clothes. Aurora was happiest singing and dancing in the forest with Phillip, not dressed in her ball gown. Tiana is more comfortable cooking and running her restaurant not dressed in some ball gown. You know how big of a pain in the ass that dress would be in the kitchen? The only princesses whose outfits weren’t radically altered were Snow White and Rapunzel. If Pocahontas didn’t look like she went shopping at Forever 21, I’d add her to the list. The princess line up does nothing to market the characters from the movies. None of the princesses in that line up are how they are in the movies.

If you are going to focus on Mulan and Merida, you better focus on all the princesses. It is ridiculous that people don’t mention that none of the princesses would be comfortable in the roles Disney gives them in the princess line up. Disney strips all of the princesses of their personalities and makes them all the same. That is a fucking problem. That is not just a problem for 2 of the princesses, it is a problem for all 11 of them.

1,474 notes

thelostsunprincess:

thebrainscoop:

fuckyeahforensics:

The winter of 1609 to 1610 was treacherous for early American settlers. Some 240 of the 300 colonists at Jamestown, in Virginia, died during this period, called the “Starving Time,” when they were under siege and had no way to get food.

Desperate times led to desperate measures. New evidence suggests that includes eating the flesh of fellow colonists who had already died.

Archaeologists revealed Wednesday their analysis of 17th century skeletal remains suggesting that settlers practiced cannibalism to survive.

Researchers unearthed an incomplete human skull and tibia (shin bone) in 2012 that contain several features suggesting that this particular person had been cannibalized. The remains come from a 14-year-old girl of English origin, whom historians are calling “Jane.”

There are about half a dozen accounts that mention cannibalistic behaviors at that time, although the record is limited, said Douglas Owsley, division head of physical anthropology at the Smithsonian National Museum of National History.

The newly analyzed remains support these accounts, providing the first forensic evidence of cannibalism in the American colonies.

What we know from the bones

Jane’s remains were found in a 17th-century trash deposit at the former site of James Fort. William Kelso, chief archaeologist at the Jamestown Rediscovery Project said at a briefing Wednesday that the fort was built in 1607, but has been washed away. Kelso and colleagues began digging in 1994 and have been excavating the site on Jamestown Island ever since.

Owsley and colleagues can tell quite a bit about what happened to Jane when at least one starving settler in the fort apparently tried to feed off of her.
If it’s any consolation, it appears that she was already dead at the time.

Researchers say it looks like someone had tried, but failed to open the skull with four shallow chops to the forehead.

The back of the skull contains markings that could have been made by a small hatchet or cleaver striking it. The cranium cracked open from the last hit. Forensic experts say it appears the person striking the skull was right-handed.

The skull’s mandible contains cuts all over it and inside, which experts say reflect an attempt to take tissue off of the face and throat with a tool such as a knife. The cheek area reflects a “sawing action” of a tool going back and forth, Owsley said. There are also sharp passages of a knife.

At some point in the process, the head was removed, Owsley said.

The damage done to these remains indicates that whoever inflicted it was not a skilled butcher, he said.

“Instead, what we see is hesitancy, trial, tentativeness and an absolute total lack of experience.”

The shin bone that archaeologists recovered also appeared to have been chopped, but in a way that more resembles classic butchering techniques, Owsley said.

“The person doing this was clearly interested in, based on what would have been accepted cuisine in the 17th century, in cheek meat, muscles of the face — that area — and tongue, and also in terms of 17th century traditional cuts, would also include the brain,” he said.

It is possible that more than one person was involved in this, given the disparity in butchering practices seen in the head compared to the shin bone.

What we know about the colonists

In the summer of 1609, the settlers experienced two significant setbacks, said James Horn, vice president of research and historical interpretation at Colonial Williamsburg.

The first was that a large fleet bringing supplies and settlers to Virginia was scattered. It had been carrying 500 settlers from Plymouth along with provisions.

“The fleet represented a new beginning for Jamestown, which had struggled over the previous two years,” Horn said.

A hurricane scattered the ships a week before they were supposed to arrive. The flagship with the leaders of this pack ended up in Bermuda. Shakespeare’s play “The Tempest” takes its inspiration from this event.

Six ships reached Jamestown in August 1609, with spoiled or depleted food, and many settlers in poor health. “On one of those ships was Jane,” Horn said.

At the same time, the relationship between the Jamestown colonists and the native Powhatan Indians had broken down. The existing settlers were already experiencing disease and a shortage of food, and the demands they made on the Powhatans strained their relations.

That was the environment into which 300 additional settlers arrived at the James Fort.

One of the leaders of the group, Captain John Smith — the same one who was famously friends with Pocahontas — returned to England in October 1609 because he was injured, Owsley said, leaving a leadership vacuum.

In the fall, the Powhatans waged war against these colonists, and launched a siege against the fort.

With no way to get food from the outside, the colonists resorted to eating horses, dogs, cats, rats, mice and snakes, Horn said, according to the accounts of George Percy, who was the president of Jamestown during this time. There are even accounts of people eating their shoes and any other leather that could be found. Anyone who left to try to scrounge for roots in the woods was killed by the Powhatans.

Percy wrote, according to the Smithsonian, “thatt notheinge was Spared to mainteyne Lyfe and to doe those things which seame incredible, as to digge upp deade corpes outt of graves and to eate them. And some have Licked upp the Bloode which hathe fallen from their weake fellowes.” In other words, cannibalism.

It’s not clear how many deceased colonists were cannibalized. Only 60 of 300 of the original colonists survived, described as “looking like skeletons,” Horn said.

In May of 1610, the settlers finally arrived who had been shipwrecked in Bermuda, effectively saving the colony. Lord Delaware brought even more colonists and enough provisions to last a year.

There are still more pits at the fort to be excavated, and only 10% of Jane’s body has been recovered, Owsley said.

“I think there’s going to be other examples,” Owsley said. “Whether that will be found — with archeology you never know what’s going to be under the next shovel.”

A special exhibition will begin at the Smithsonian about Jamestown and Jane’s story on Friday.

I know this isn’t directly zoology-related, but having practiced my fair share of faunal qualification and forensic analysis of osteological remains I feel like I can weigh in if just slightly on this topic. 

We really, genuinely have no way of knowing whether or not the people of Jamestown were cannibalizing their dead. What we do have is a bit of tool evidence and a whole lot of conjecture. Like, 95% conjecture. It is easy to come to quick conclusions based off of this sort of thing, but where is the other evidence?  Do they have reason to believe that these bones had been cooked?  Are there written documents to support this theory?  are there multiple instances where this has occurred, or was this an isolated incident?  To say that you are able to “see hesitancy” in the butchering techniques is a stretch.  The ‘disparity of butchering practices’ does not necessary indicate there was more than one person involved, it just means that the bones are shaped differently, need to be handled differently, and there could have been more than one tool.  

I have not read the archaeological papers published about this dig so I do not know if there is more evidence to support the cannibalization theory, but I do know that the media loves to take this kind of story and run with it because it’s sensational and enticing.  Maybe they were eating their dead but until additional physical materials verify this claim, I am skeptical. 

Cannibalism in Colonial Jamestown is well documented. Historians have been writing about it since the 1970s. Edmund S. Morgan being one of the first to write about it in his book American Slavery, American Freedom. The article also lists written sources that back up the archeological evidence. Historians have known what this article is stating for decades. Archeology is just starting to back up the written records.

(via lipsredasroses)