Elizabeth’s Cultural Moment: Sexualized/Racialized Violence is Sexy (NOT!)

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Elizabeth’s Cultural Moment: Sexualized/Racialized Violence is Sexy (NOT!)

New York comedian/genius Sara Benincasa shared a link on The Facebook a couple days ago that exposed the misogyny of some dumbasses at comedy.com Someone thought it was funny to make a list of the "10 Hottest Women With Shiners " which started with Dana Perino, Bush's press secretary,

who took one for the team during the shoe incident, and included some graphic photos of women with black eyes. When some commenters failed to see how this was promoting domestic abuse, I decided it was my duty a an angry feminist to bring this to y’all.

First of all, it doesn’t matter how the women featured in the post got their black eye (even if by a wayward shoe directed at Dubya). Suggesting that injured women are “hot” makes a pretty blatant statement. Glamorizing or making fun of women with shiners, can only serve to make domestic abuse part of the cultural norm, and completely diminishes the horror of violence.

Seeing this reminded me of a fairly recent ad campaign that has been bothering me. Remy Martin’s “Things Are Getting Interesting” billboards feature two women, one black and one white involved in some kind of lesbo-erotic bondage play.

remy_martin-1.jpg

But even if we lesbos with some kind of analysis of sexism and racism are turned on by these billboards, we are totally naïve to think they were created with us in mind. I seriously doubt that Remy Martin is catering to their lesbian customer base. They are catering to the misogynist male gaze that is excited by women portrayed as sex slaves just for them. Furthermore, the black woman in the ad is featured with chains in her mouth (there is even a blown-up section featuring just her, with chains in her mouth) — hearkening back to a time of black slavery, the black woman’s body as object — as a laboring body and a hyper-sexualized body. WTF, Remy Martin, shame on you.



Comments [32]

little_earth's picture

I have an advert I don't

I have an advert I don't like. Its a twix commercial. The one where the guy pauses after the asking the girl to his place and thinks of blogging about their 'ideals' as a way to get her to go. I don't know why but I picture a nice case of date rape as he leads her to his apartment under false pretenses... That bothers me more than someone using a skantily clad female to sell something, unless of course it goes beyond just naked girls to that chain bondage thing. Either way when advertising like that is done, whether on purpose or not, does insert into the subconcious.

Lots of Love - little_earth "Occasionally, I'm callous and strange" - Willow

Tex's picture

Having sex and making love

Having sex and making love are two totally different acts. If you are paying for or are getting paid to have sex, that's not making love. In film they call it a sex scene, they don't call it a making love scene. Pornography is about sex - it's not about making love.

Rover, the act of making love is not depicted in pornographic scenes......actors are performing sex acts for money. My meaning still has not dawned on you.

Reminder - Bette and Tina are fictional characters in a fictional television series. I'm talking about real people......real connections......

If you equate pornography sex acts to making love, then you will never understand what I am saying. Nor will you ever understand what I mean or believe me when I say - when I make love with someone - neither of us think of the act as pornographic.

Nothing but love,

Tex

Twitter Time @kdhales

rovermom's picture

So you think the ad is

So you think the ad is demeaning, Long? Because those pictures you post are paid gigs to demean women to a sexual object also.

And Tex, I know it's not reality...

and to quote myself, which is almost of what Long was saying in her comment to me, was...

The ad is demeaning because of personal experience from one's past...AND if you (or I should have said, one) allows it to demean you.

And since you didn't read below that comment, Tex...I was saying that the last time I was demeaned was when I saw a road sign that said "GOD HATES FAGS"...

That is demeaning and offensive....but the ad is sooo open it is viewer/user suggestive.

I know we don't mind being gawked at by some FINE women...but have a problem if it is men.

In those ads, those women know they we be gawked at by anyone and everyone...and accept that when doing sexy ads. If they didn't accept that, they wouldn't agree to do them.

rovermom's picture

I am not angry. I am speaking

I am not angry. I am speaking clearly. I am merely pointing out that we, ourselves, sexually demean women - because we, ourselves, are turned on by women, and yet, some lesbians have this fixation that men are the only ones that demean women. Like saying if a woman demeans another woman to a sexual object, it's ok - but if a man does it, it's not.

I wasn't in any way trying to say that you can't be turned on or that you shouldn't post your desires of sexual, well you know what I mean - but since you are noted as being very upfront on being an "oink", it was easier using your pictorial displays and your commentary of the female body and what it does to ya.

We all here have demean women to a sexual object of desire - whether that person wanted us to or not - and what ever does turn one on, be it eye candy or ear candy...it is indeed pornographic to that person.

Some people are turned on sexually, not by seeing nudity or sexual positions, but by just browsing through a JCPenny swimsuit issue - or by browsing through a Cabela catalog.

So no, I'm not mad, or angry, just pointing out that the AD in this BLOG is not any more demeaning that what we do on a daily basis around here. We do demean women to a sexual object of desire, and if we don't then...we would not gawk at women.

And to quote Tex, because it just dawned on me about something...

Rover, the act of making love is not depicted in pornographic scenes…….

When Tina and Bette make love...did anyone want to go home, or go to the bedroom, or pause the TV to make love to their girlfriend/wife upon watching it...or in the slightest get turned on?

if so...then the act of making love is depicted in pornographic scenes

Tex's picture

Happy Holidays, LB! Do you

Happy Holidays, LB! Do you still have that red swimsuit you wore on Baywatch? hehehehe

Santa Tex

Twitter Time @kdhales

Tex's picture

Happy holidays to you too,

Happy holidays to you too, Itty!

Santa Tex

Twitter Time @kdhales

LongBeachDogLover's picture

Tex...... you're killing me

Tex...... you're killing me !! Laughing out loud

Itty, get that flea ridden 'guide dog' outta the bedroom.......

Allergic to silicone,
LBDL
xxoo

itty's picture

Hey Tex... I'll be getting

Hey Tex...

I'll be getting my 'guide dog' soon!!!
(Not meant to offend anyone who is visually impaired)

Hope you have a good Holiday!!!

Tex's picture

I certainly don’t feel that

I certainly don’t feel that way… even though not a day goes by in my life, that I don’t get ‘gawked’ at by men. Whether it’s at work, or at the grocery store, it’s all a part of life………

OMG, LB, you're Pamela Anderson! No wonder you'll never post an avatar, we would all go blind at the sight! Laughing out loud

Nothing but love,

Tex

Twitter Time @kdhales

LongBeachDogLover's picture

Rover, Rover, Rover......take

Rover, Rover, Rover......take a breath, and calm down. I posted that picture, and you know it. It's all about 'adult', naughty and nice silly Christmas stuff. Don't take it so literally.

My God girl..... It's okay to enjoy beautiful women and beautiful men..... I always have, and I always will. I also happen to have the utmost respect for women and men.

Sometimes, our own personal perspective on human sexuality can make us feel objectified. I certainly don't feel that way... even though not a day goes by in my life, that I don't get 'gawked' at by men. Whether it's at work, or at the grocery store, it's all a part of life......... it's how we deal with it that matters Rover. Do you feel objectified? I find a lesbian, or even a hetero man, 'enjoying' my body to be a compliment. A nod or a wink, I think it's awesome. Objectified ? Never !! It's human nature.......It's how I respond that gives me control, or takes my power away, and thereby subjugating myself to objectification.

Our sexuality is our connection to our humanity. Female or male, it's beautiful. And, what we find 'demeaning' is simply a matter of personal taste......

For the most part, Americans are very 'puritanical' in their sexual attitudes..... these sorts of discussions could go on forever and never find a conclusion.

I've been reading some of your comments around here tonight, you sound very angry, don't be. Life is way to short, didn't you say that in one of your comments.......

Self censorship is a beautiful thing. When I find something patently offensive... I don't look at it, read it or participate in it.

LongBeachDogLover's picture

Bravo Tex.

Bravo Tex.

rovermom's picture

Just because you have never

Just because you have never does not mean it does not exist.

Tex's picture

but clearly those two who are

but clearly those two who are in the ad are accepting one another’s playful act,

This was a paying gig for these two women - it's not reality - but, you definitely proved my point.

The ad is demeaning because of personal experience from one’s past…ad if you allow it to demean you.

Rover, I didn't read any of your comment below this sentence - and am not going to.....

Twitter Time @kdhales

Tex's picture

I have NEVER made love to

I have NEVER made love to anyone and remotely thought of it as pornographic......

Twitter Time @kdhales

annemarlen's picture

Cui bono? If the ad or those

Cui bono? If the ad or those posted pictures like this in the link, all those pictures turn women into objects. Its not OK.

love is a pebble laughing in the sun

rovermom's picture

And further more if ya'll can

And further more if ya'll can take these pictures of women half fucking nude and get turned on by them and use them to gawk...

like this one

http://i165.photobucket.com/albums/u64/irishfootboy/5441yk3.gif

and like countless other that I have seen posted on here and other websites...and it not being demeaning...

then why should the ad be any different?

rovermom's picture

define making love and define

define making love and define sex...and according to whom? we all have our own vision of what that expression should look like and feel like.

I can actually see a very varying thin line between the two, that according to perception, would be in more then one place at one time. And again, it comes down to self vs. group, because we are a pack animal...we look to see ourselves in others, the same as when we look at others, we see ourselves.

And when we seek to change our own self, we seek to change those around us. And we're constantly in this fight of identity issue of our own acceptance.

I really rather save my energy and stand up against wrong doings of injustice....no matter what side of the coin it may be, and sometimes it's really hard to tell where the injustice is being done, because both sides are doing it to one another.

Have you ever had raw sex and made love at the same time? I have....and it was very very erotic...and not no soft porn, that's for sure. Laughing out loud

rovermom's picture

What is reality, Tex? This

What is reality, Tex?

This isn't a scene of violence - and you might not accept bondage as being acceptable sexual acts - but clearly those two who are in the ad are accepting one another's playful act, like a whole sub-culture of people do.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bondage_(BDSM)

The ad is demeaning because of personal experience from one's past...ad if you allow it to demean you.

I'll be honest, the last time I was demeaned was when I drove home from Harrisburg last month after thanksgiving, it was the day OC shut down. I started to blog it, but didn't finish before work and when I got back I was too thrown to finish it.

But on I-78 east bound some where around Midway, there is a sign that says "god hates fags".

You know what? That's demeaning!!! That sign had me going from loving the beautiful sight of my state's country land to fucking crying all the way home in no time flat. As soon as I could make out what that sign was saying my heart dropped and I have never felt so....I can't even describe in words how it felt.

But that ad is not demeaning to me. it's two women..laughing and sharing a fun moment...and very playful...not resisting each other's playful bondage. But then again, when I'm with the right woman, I don't mind her tying me up once in awhile. Cause this Mikey likes it.

I accept bondage as being part of a normal sexual act between two (or more) accepting adults. Even though this isn't really a sexual act in the ad, sex is an overtone...but why do we have to assume that this sexual overtone is a negative one and a demeaning one?

I know this has nothing to do with the conversation but, earlier today my mom was all over me about the news of some actor, Brad Garrett (?) and his brush with paparrazzi and how he got to walk away. She was going on and on and wanting me to check out the video, even after I had told her how much i disapprove of the pap's. I mean, why even visit that TMZ site and watch the clip, which is only promoting their career as being viable and worthy?

My point, I guess is, I have the choice of perception and the power to give or take power away from what ever I perceive and view in this world as ...I can allow ads to power over me...or ignore them and take the power away from it.

I'd rather be in la la land and refuse to buy into media's subliminal messages, by...really being ignorant to media's ads, especially when it curtails capitalistic corporate things. I'd rather pay attention to the world, on a humanistic level, that media leaves out.

Reality is not in ads - and at some point we have to lead by example. In other words get over stuff.

And personally, I don't find this demeaning. But all those blue "Restore marriage, yes on Prop 8" bumper stickers, here in California, is a different story.

Would it be illegal to carry a black marker and just scribble that shit out? Oh yeah, freedom of speech.

Tex's picture

No, Rover, no one needs to

No, Rover, no one needs to have a chain in their mouth....the ad is demeaning. Advertising (as people chosen to represent you) tends to send a message of acceptance - if someone sees or reads something over and over they lose siight of reality. This ad, as pornography, seen by those that view them as realistic, lose the humanizing perspective of acts of compassion.

Twitter Time @kdhales

Tex's picture

Rover, the act of making love

Rover, the act of making love is not depicted in pornographic scenes.......

Twitter Time @kdhales

rovermom's picture

So are you saying that the

So are you saying that the white male should have the chains in his mouth and holding onto the chains that's wrapped around the neck of a black man...

If we have it all one color/race, say it were black men in that pose...the black men would feel that it the world entertaining on the imprisonment of the black man...

And if it was all white males....women and other ethnics would feel that media was dominated by white males.

it would be hella racist if only one race was being chained...

This ad is clever...

ElizKoke's picture

but that would still be HELLA

but that would still be HELLA racist...

rovermom's picture

I don't really see the

I don't really see the problem in the ads, maybe just like I don't see the problem in alcohol. But that didn't stop WCTU for wanting to ban alcohol, because they blamed alcohol on social problems, instead of blaming personal weakness or failing.

I think porn, because we are such a closed society when it comes to sexuality, is vital, because it is a sexual outlet, that normally would be out in the open and not so....closed. Animals have sex in the open, even in their social groups - the mating games are open to watch. We learn from watching one another; we mimic.

But in our society, we have closed all sex off to the point that sex has went underground where rape...pedophilia...and violent sexual acts thrive, because sex is so closed off and forbidden that we don't talk about sex, until we feel comfortable. If we ever feel comfortable about sex.

I think it's not about banning this stuff...and banning porn from boys, I think what we need to do is make sure that sex education..and sexual manners are taught, so that respect can have a chance.

The last thing we need to do is close off sexuality even more then it is.

Annie Oakley's picture

Speaking of facebook. Look

Speaking of facebook. Look what facebook just banned:

http://riverdaughter.wordpress.com/2008/12/21/facebook-bans-breastfeedin...

You'll note if you read the article that Jon-pig-misogynist-grope-Hillary-Favreau was named one of the six “Bostonians of the Year”. Groping women in effigy while your bud helps by forcing a beer down her effigy throat while pulling her effigy hair is rewarded.

REWARDED.

That chain in the mouth bothers me too. Like a bit in a horse's mouth - control the head; control the horse. And a bit can cause a great deal of pain. A bit also implies "riding"...

Men/boys are stuffing themselves with online porn, changing their perception of women/girls big time. It leaks out into advertising and idiocy like "hottest women with shiners".

If we don't work to actively stop the resulting misogyny and access boys have to porn we are going to be in even more serious trouble in the future.

rovermom's picture

Now see, I'd love to see a

Now see, I'd love to see a black man biting on some chains and bonding the white man, in some homo erotica ad. yeah just switch the women for men and ...mmmmm.

would Kent be offended by that? I'm hoping not. Because I think that would be hot.

Not2Taem's picture

Judging by the bottles I

Judging by the bottles I change my vote for the origin of the billboard.

lucia_2008's picture

Maybe it's me, but it does

Maybe it's me, but it does seem that there have been some backward changes in marketing. Women need to speak up and yell a little. You know like the old days.

Smile...life is good!!!

Tex's picture

Not so blatantly.....things

Not so blatantly.....things had gotten better

Twitter Time @kdhales

minniesota's picture

Tex, whaddya mean "trend?"

Tex, whaddya mean "trend?" Hasn't stuff like this been happening, since like, forever?

Still searching for the right brainy quote.

lmz's picture

no bilboards in France for

no bilboards in France for Rémy Martin Cognac
just bottles

http://bp2.blogger.com/_6KFY_GGkxys/SCCO62mJAAI/AAAAAAAABA8/jn8sfYyDyb0/...

Tex's picture

We've got a trend starting

We've got a trend starting here - a trend of accepted inequality. When the majority preaches bigotry as acceptible, it makes it easy for all the "double naughts" in the world to start with the minority jokes, cliches, represenations......this is not good!

Tex

Twitter Time @kdhales

Not2Taem's picture

Are the adds for the rapper

Are the adds for the rapper or the cognac? I'm going to guess the former. Either way, it crosses a line, but the origin does make a difference when interpreting intent of audience.

As to the "bit" with the chain in her mouth, this could be seen as her controlling the other woman with a very versatile part of her body, especially since she appears to be smiling past it.

Don't know though; I am so rarely the audience for which adds of any sort are written.