Looking in the Mirror as a Young, Female, Art Student

Shelby Lux

Daneen Bergland

Popular Culture

16 November 2014

Looking in the Mirror as a Young, Female Art Student

With the upbringing of new movies over the past years, common stereotypical portrayals are quite easy to recognize. For example, popular kids are commonly shown to be snobby while smart kids are usually shown as being nerdy and bullied in school. Much like these more well-known stereotypes, art students are shown similarly to each other but shown less frequently. Art students are all portrayed a little differently depending on the movies. Most of the time, these characters are not the focal point and act in the background behind the leading role. Unlike the portrayals in movies that show art students to be outcasts, unpopular and dark compared to their peers, real life art students differ greatly. While comparing the art students in movies to myself, I noticed that my appearance and personality are opposite or more toned down then their exaggerated characteristics. Often times, art students are not the way popular culture media represents them physically, in regards to both fashion and personality.

I, myself, am an art student studying graphic design at Portland State University. I spend most of my days in the art building on 5th avenue with other students that also have a passion for art. From seeing and interacting with art students’ first-hand, it is easy to compare the differences between real life students vs. movie portrayals. For example, in the popular click flick comedy Mean Girls which is a movie about Cady Heron a 16-year-old homeschooled girl, returns to the United States after 12-years in Africa and attends public school for the first time. Janis and Damian who are classmates with Cady warn her to avoid the school’s most exclusive clique, the Plastics. The Plastics soon take an interest. Soon after, Cady is slowly becoming one of The Plastics and Janis plans revenge against Regina with Cady as an infiltrator (Wiki).  One of the main characters is Janis, who is a gothic, outcast art student. She is often looked down upon her other peers based on her exaggerated style and personality. Janis has jet black hair, normally wears black clothing with bold accessories. Unlike her peers she is brutally honest, outspoken, and very different making it more difficult to truly relate with. I had a difficult time even relating to her even as an art student myself.

MV5BMjE1MDQ4MjI1OV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwNzcwODAzMw@@._V1_SX640_SY720_

After watching the movie, I was curious as to what others thought about Janis and her bold, gothic style. I found this web article called “Where’s the beef?” In it, Peter Rainer mentions “[Cady] immediately gets pulled into a vortex of cliques—the Plastics, the Mathletes, and the freaks and geeks in between” (Rainer). This quote is a clear example of how someone’s appearance effects the way others view them and instantly categorizes them into different groups. Rainer’s article was the only review I could find online that somewhat referred to Janis. Others focused on Cady played by Lindsay Lohan and the “plastics”. It was interesting to me that even with her artistic and unique style, her character blended into the background and didn’t seem as important as the others based on the movie responses.  Janis is portrayed as an artistic freak who is different compared to her surrounding peers.  In most cases, I am very soft spoken, quite in larger groups of people, less opinionated and often wear colorful or neutral clothing that doesn’t stand out that much from a crowd. I have loose light brown waves and rarely wear any jewelry because it makes me feel too dressed up. If someone were to see Janis and me standing right next to each other, it would be easy to recognize how opposite we really are based on our personalities and appearance. Even though, art students are creative individuals and often times think “outside of the box”, their appearance and personalities don’t always reflect this in real life.

MV5BMjA2Nzg0NjQwM15BMl5BanBnXkFtZTcwODgxNDgzMQ@@._V1_SY317_CR1,0,214,317_AL_

As well as being portrayed as outcasts, art students are often shown to unpopular. In movies such as Art School Confidential which is about how the main character, Jerome pursues his true obsession to art school. As he learns how the art world really works, he finds that he must adapt to the reality that faces him (IMDb). Jerome attends art school focusing on being an illustrator. Before school, he had all these high expectations and ideals of how art school would be like. When got to class, he realized it was not like how he imagined it to be. After a while, he becomes friends with Bardo who is considered to be a loser by others. With this, Jerome is looked down upon by his peers. For example, in classroom critiques negative feedback was given out to unpopular kids even if the quality of work was far better than others. In real life classroom critiques that is unlikely to happen. From my experience, art students tend to judge each other based on the quality of art work rather than solely off of the actual artist. In high school, I do remember there being cliques between students but art students were minimal and usually weren’t constrained to one label. For example, in school I took almost every art class available and I was friends with the students that wanted to pursue the arts as well but that didn’t stop me from being friends with individuals from other cliques. I wasn’t never looked down upon from my peers from my passion and don’t remember ever being treated negatively based off of my status in school. In previous critiques, my peers would give appropriate feedback depending on the art work. With this experience, when I see art students portrayed as being unpopular it’s unsettling. It is difficult for me to watch students treated so badly in movies and even television shows with false interpretations. In real life situations, art students can vary in status and are often times shown in a brighter, positive light.

Shes_All_That

Another misconception about art students that I have heard quite often is that artists have darker souls than other types of individuals. While some art can come off as dark or unsettling, this doesn’t always mean that the artist is. In the movie She’s All That which is about how a high school jock makes a bet with a friend that he can turn an unattractive girl into the school’s next prom queen and his friend chooses Laney, an outcast art student. (IMDb)  Laney who is a high school artist is considered to be very dark and solitary compared to her peers. With past experiences, Laney thought that if she hid away from others, she could escape the hurtful situations that come with being a teenager. She draws inspiration from her troubling past into her paintings such as her mom passing away when she was a young girl and is often times found to be in her dark basement acting as her art studio. Much like Laney, I have made darker pieces which usually held a deeper meaning but I wouldn’t consider myself to be a dark person. I have had negative experiences in my life occur that have put me in a dark place for a while much like other individuals have. For me, to forgive and forget about these negative event, I create. Whether it be: painting, drawing or taking photographs, I enjoy making pieces inspired by what has happened in my life. Doing this, acts as a coping mechanism because it allows me to relive a moment, emotionally deal with it and move forward. I don’t think that constrains me of having a dark, stand offish personality. Many artists will make dark pieces to make their audience somewhat uncomfortable and informed. This darkness does not, more often than not, correspond directly to the students’ personality, usually just an emotional state after a tragic event.

From my observations, the portrayals of art students in movies such as Mean Girls, Art School Confidential and She’s All That are not always 100% accurate to everyday artists. In movies, artists are often shown as being dark, outcasts, and unpopular compared to their peers. While comparing myself to the stereotypical portrayals it’s easy to see that I don’t fit into the “common art student” category based on how I look and act compared to my peers. From the movies I’ve watched I can say, I’m not as brutally honest and bold like Janis, I’m very quiet in comparison. My art work was never judged in a critique based off of my peers’ preference on whether they liked me personally or not like Jerome’s experience. Even if I’m having a bad day, I don’t come across as dark as Laney does in She’s All That. After looking at the above examples, it is easy to see that real life art students are not the way popular culture media tends to represent them physically as well as in terms of personality and fashion. All in all, it’s unclear to tell just based on appearance whether or not a person is pursuing the arts without getting to know them a little better.

Work Cited

Art School Confidential. Dir. Terry Zwigoff. Perf. Max Minghella, Sophia Myles, and John Malkovich. Sony Pictures Classics. 2006.

“Art School Confidential.” IMDb. IMDb.com. Web. 1 Dec. 2014.

Mean Girls. Dir. Mark S. Waters. Perf. Lindsay Lohan, Rachel McAdams, and Tina Fey. Paramount, 2004.

“Mean Girls.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 30 Nov. 2014. Web. 1 Dec. 2014.

Rainer, Peter. “Where’s the Beef?” NYMag.com. Web. 1 Dec. 2014. <http://nymag.com/nymetro/movies/reviews/n_10326/&gt;.

She’s All That. Dir. Robert Iscove. Perf. Freddie Prinze, Jr., Rachael Leigh Cook, Matthew Lillard, and Paul Walker.  Miramax Films. 1999.

“She’s All That.” IMDb. IMDb.com. Web. 1 Dec. 2014.

Curvy Women In Popular Culture

“Curvy Women In Popular Culture”

Haley Mills

Looking in the Popular Culture: Mirror Essay

December 2nd, 2014

Throughout the years, heavy women have gone through many different stereotypes, whether it be in the media or with society as a whole. Overweight women in the entertainment business are often times subject to roles that make their weight the main focus and use that to fulfill stereotypes and make humiliating jokes toward their size. Because of this, the characters are looked at as being heavy before they are looked at as being an actual person. Since this is so prevalent in our popular culture, it has become a normal way of thinking within our society. However, there has been a shift in the industry that is trying to counter the way heavier women are portrayed, to show that they are actually normal and attractive people.

In order to understand the change that is happening, we must look at different sources and how they portray heavy women in the wrong ways. One of the main sources of false portrayal is basically every movie Melissa McCarthy plays in. In her movies, her character is often a confident women but mixed in with many other bad qualities. These qualities include being vulgar, lacking personal hygiene, wearing unflattering clothes and having a tom-boy personality. Her role in The Heat summarizes almost every stereotype about heavier women. Another example is Rebel Wilson in Pitch Perfect. Her character goes by the name “Fat Amy” so “twig bitches don’t call [her] that behind [her] back” (Perfect).  Why does this even need to come up in the film? Writers feel the need to point out a women’s weight in the these movies so either herself or others can use it for humorous purposes. Thankfully, there has been a shift throughout the years that is changing the perception of heavier women within the entertainment industry.

It is becoming more obvious that there is a small change happening within movies and television that are trying to normalize women’s bodies and the way curvier women act. In Hairspray, the main character Tracy Turnblad, is an overweight teenager who dreams of winning Miss Teenage Hairspray on the Corny Collins Show. Even though the popular girls in the movie make fun of her, Tracy remains confident and wins Miss Teenage Hairspray. This is a great example because it shows that even though someone is overweight, you can still be talented and achieve the dreams you have set for yourself. Another character who is very similar is Mercedes on Glee. Mercedes is another curvy woman, but she is always dressed well, has a confident attitude and is one of the best singers in the Glee club. Glee breaks many other stereotypes within today’s society, which is why it was such a big success across the nation. In Gilmore Girls, Melissa McCarthy plays a character named Sookie, who is a charming cook. She is able to find love on the show which  is usually not the case with heavier women in the media. Sookie’s weight is never brought up in the show which allows humor to show up in other ways. These shows and movies are just some of the subtle examples that are changing the way curvy women are perceived, but the two that are becoming increasingly popular are The Mindy Project and Girls.

In the Mindy Project and Girls, we are introduced to two different curvier women who approach the conventional standards of beauty and weight in different ways. Mindy Khaling plays Mindy Lahiri on The Mindy Project. Mindy is a curvier women who cares about her looks and dresses in cute and flattering clothing. Mindy knows she could improve herself by losing a few pounds but is happy and satisfied in her current body. In the show, she talks about the daily struggles of life including her eating habits and her exercise routine or lack there of. Mindy has a charming and confident personality and attracts several male boyfriends throughout the show. Lena Dunham plays the character Hannah Horvath on the show Girls. In Girls, Hannah’s character is one who is unconcerned with the conventions of beauty whether it be her weight or the way she dresses. She considers herself about 13 pounds overweight in the show, but that doesn’t stop her from having lots of sex or wearing whatever she wants. In the show, Hannah is nude a lot which is not really the case in television shows or movies for heavier women. This is groundbreaking for us heavier women because society often times tries to make us feel like we should hide our bodies and never exposes them like Lena Dunham does in her show. Both shows have two different takes on curvier women and how they act in their lives. Both are changing the way curvy women are viewed and show that no matter our size we can still be beautiful and do the same things that “normal” sized women do in their lives.

An interesting point to make is that both The Mindy Project and Girls are written and directed by Mindy and Lena themselves. This is one of the main reasons why the shows are so accurate in showing how curvier women should be portrayed in the real world. They are using events that have happened in their lives and incorporating their views on their bodies in their shows. Mindy like her character, cares about her style and looks and realizes she could improve herself by losing a few pounds, but it isn’t a priority for her. When being asked on the Today Show about why she doesn’t do nude scenes she said, “because that means I would have to exercise” (Strauss).  On the contrast, Lena Dunham was asked in an interview why her show has so much nudity and she responded by saying , “it’s because it’s a realistic expression of what it’s like to be alive” (Molloy). Lena and her character both tend to act like they don’t care at all about any beauty norms. In society, we have women who are like either one of these women. By having two different types of shows conveying many of the same meanings, it helps women of all different personalities feel more comfortable with their body size.

Being a curvy girl in today’s society, it is very easy to get angry and sad about the way heavier females are portrayed in the entertainment industry. But after taking the time to find shows that are trying to normalize the views of heavier women, I have nothing but hope for the future for curvier girls to be looked at as women first instead of our body size. It only takes a few shows and movies to start a revelation within our culture to start changing the ways heavier females are portrayed. We can only hope that more and more producers and writers can come together and stop having false stereotypes in their shows and start making more accurate representations of all women, so that it is a normal way of thinking for everybody in the world.

Bibliography

Bogart, Laura. “How Melissa McCarthy Sold Out Overweight Women”. Salon. Salon Media Group Inc. 13 July 2014. Web. 10 November 2014.  <http://www.salon.com/2014/07/14/ how_melissa_mccarthy_sold_out_overweight_women/>.

Dunam, Lena. (Judd Apatow, Lena Dunham). (2012). Girls [Television Series].  New York City, NY: Apatow Productions.

Khaling, Mindy. (Mindy Khaling). (2012).  The Mindy Project [Television Series]. Los Angeles, CA: NBC Studios.

Molloy, Tim. :Judd Apatow and Lena Dunham Get Mad at Me For Asking Why She’s Naked So Much on ‘Girls’”. The Wrap. The Wrap News Inc. 9 January 2014. Web. 10 November 2014. <http://www.thewrap.com/judd-apatow-lena-dunham-get-mad-asking-shes-naked-much-girls/&gt;.

Pitch Perfect. Dir. Jason Moore. Perf. Anna Kendrick, Britney Snow and Rebel Wilson. Brownstone Productions (III), 2012. DVD.

Strauss, Elissa. “Why Mindy Kaling — not Lena Dunham — is the body positive icon of the moment”. The Week. The Week Publications. 22 April 2014. Web. 10 November 2014. <http://theweek.com/article/index/260126/why-mindy-kaling-mdash-not-lena-dunham-mdash-is-the-body-positive-icon-of-the-moment&gt;.

Single, White and a Mother

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2465140/?ref_=nv_sr_3

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0238784/

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2660806/?ref_=fn_al_tt_1

 

Heather Hurley

Daneen Bergland; Hilary Gray

Popular Culture

16 November 2014

Single, White and a Mother

When it comes to being a single mother, there is always a stigma that comes with it; whether positive or negative, that mostly depends on the type of media it comes from. Mothers, particularly single mothers, are portrayed in what seems to be either two ways, one of which has to do with low socioeconomic status, the other with being a young mother. If you hear the word single mom, the first thing that might pop into your head is, what kind of money does she make, does she work, or how many kids does she have? The stereotypes that come with being a single mom can be harsh at times, but as a single mother myself, I can understand where some of the thoughts come from. As for how a single mother, particularly of Caucasian race, is portrayed in popular culture the word that best describes the kind of portrayal is, scattered. Meaning there really is no set way a single mother is portrayed. She can play the “dumb blonde” role to “rich bitch” and even is seen as being poor or one who struggles financially.  There doesn’t seem to be one set stereotype, or one set idea of what a single mother should look like or be seen as in the media. I will examine three different popular culture artifacts and take a look at how a single mother, particularly of Caucasian race, is being portrayed and highlight some of the main points or key elements of the artifacts that relate specifically to a single white mother and the different portrayals presented. The three artifacts that I have decided to take a deeper look at are: the television shows Gilmore Girls and Mom, as well as the movie The Single Moms Club. By examining these artifacts and taking a look at significant stereotypes, I will compare and look at the contrast of the portrayal of a single white mother in the media versus in real life, and compare them all to my own identity.

In this first artifact, I will examine the television show Gilmore Girls; produced by Amy Sherman-Palladino, first airing in 2000. The show introduces a single mother, Lorelai Gilmore, who had her daughter, Rory, at the age of sixteen, and is raising her alone. The father is nowhere in sight, nor talked about at all in the first few episodes; which is a stereotype in itself, that most single moms are raising their kid(s) on their own because the “dead-beat” dad is not around. In the first episode, the pilot into the series is one of the best to represent what I am looking for in the portrayal of single white mothers. In this episode, right off the bat a major stereotype of a single mother is present, and that is that they have struggles with money. Although it would seem as though Lorelai has a great job, the manager and eventual owner of her own Inn, and makes enough money to support her and her child, it still doesn’t seem to be enough for the things that they want, not necessarily need, like private school in this case. In order to better understand this stereotype, I will give a brief summary of what this episode is about. Lorelai’s daughter, Rory, had got accepted into this prestigious private school; they were so excited that she had actually got in. Then it would seem as though the amount of money it would cost in order for Rory to attend, was more than Lorelai could handle. Therefore, she had to go to her parents, who happen to be very wealthy, and ask to borrow money. And I highlight the word borrow because of her independent stature, in that she doesn’t like to nor wants to, ask for money from anyone, especially her parents. She had to make it very clear that she was only borrowing the money, and that it would be paid back, and that if it wasn’t for her daughters education and needs, she would not be asking for the money.

One of the more interesting stereotypes present in this television show is the fact that Lorelai had her daughter at such a young age. Not only does it seem most single mothers are represented as having their children young, but it seems to go hand-in-hand with the kind of relationship that the two have; more of a best friends relationship and not parent-child. It would seem in order to have this kind of close relationship with your child, you either have to be a single parent or close in age (meaning a young mother). Another factor could be that the father is not around, he only appears every once in a while. Therefore, if not having a make figure around for her daughter, Lorelai maybe felt obligated to always give her daughter what she wanted. This doesn’t hold true in my case, or for that matter, in many cases where fathers are not present.  Not only do I have to be the mother and father, I have to be the good guy and the bad guy all the time. There is no alternative, so it can get confusing to children, and it doesn’t really allow for me to be that close to my children, I always have to be the parent. As for the being a young mother part, in my situation, I was twenty-one when I had my first child, and although I didn’t finish college or get a career going, there would of been plenty of time, leaving less room for financial troubles of not having finished high school, which most young “teen” mothers don’t do.

Some critics bash the idea behind this series in its entirety in that it does not represent a realistic idea of what is reality; that the relationships, the type of people and the things they do and the way they act; is just simply not real. This is not how people or situation is like in the real world. (Calvin 15). Therefore, it can be said that this can extend to the relationship that Lorelai and Rory have in the show, as well as the portrayal of the life of a single mom. Sure, the stereotype of single moms being young when having their kids is present, but the struggles that should be associated with that stereotype are not present throughout this series. However, in the first episode, as mentioned before, regarding the struggle with being able to pay for Rory’s private education, the unrealistic part is that most of the time, especially a single mother, it would not be so easy to find someone who is able and willing to help you at a moment’s notice when things start getting hard, whether it is financially or something else.

For the second artifact, the television show, Mom, written by Chuck Lorre et al., we see a completely different side of the life of a single white mother. Unlike Gilmore Girls, the reality of the struggle the single mom Christy goes through is more likely to happen in real life; at least when it comes to the stereotypes surrounding single mothers like lower socioeconomic status and financial problems. However, just like Lorelai from Gilmore Girls, Christy also had her first child at the age of sixteen. One example of the differences and change in stereotype being portrayed is Christy has a job as a waitress, probably a more suitable job for a single mother, especially one who also had her daughter at a young age, than say a manager/owner of their own Inn like Lorelai. I make this comparison between Christy and Lorelai because although they both didn’t finish high school, had a child as a teenager and neither has the “baby daddy” present, they are shown in such a different way in the popular culture artifact. Meaning that Christy in Mom actually has to struggle, she doesn’t have the choice of going to her rich parents, which is why Mom is a better portrayal for what a single mother would go through.

Although in the television series, we see Christy working and making somewhat of a living, the fact that she is a recovering alcoholic and has a slight gambling addiction, proves that she is unable to put her money where it belongs, which is evident in  the episodes  “Hepatitis and lemon zest” and “ Figgy pudding and The Rapture.” In these episodes, the family, as well as the grandmother, who lives with them and has her own struggles, gets evicted from their home due to not paying the rent, and ends up moving into a really rundown hotel. These are the types of real struggles I was talking about. This would never happen in Gilmore Girls because she comes from a rich family.

One of the more interesting aspects of this show is the fact that this single mother is being portrayed as having problems with alcohol abuse in the past, which might be a better representation of the life a single mother lives, although it does not relate to my own life as a single mother. This is almost the complete opposite of what is shown in Gilmore Girls, in that there is no one there to catch this mother when she falls, and instead of alcohol problems, Lorelai’s only addiction seems to be caffeine.

The last artifact that I took a deeper look at is a movie written, directed, produced by Tyler Perry called The Single Moms Club. This artifact is different than all the rest in that it not only showcases single white mothers, but there are five mothers in total, two white, two African American and one Hispanic. Although there are many different representations and portrayals with each individual single mother in this movie, I am only going to focus on how the single white mothers are meant to be perceived. One of the single mothers has a great job, lots of money and has only one child; which she had later in life by way of sperm donor. The second single white mother becomes single due to a failed marriage where she ends up with nothing but a house and kids to take care of. She has never worked in her life, and had to let go of the maid, forcing her to raise her kids alone, which she never had really done before. This particular mother also plays the “dumb blonde” role in that she doesn’t get a lot of things, and has to get told things by her friends in order to see something that is obvious to others.  Just by this brief explanation, there really doesn’t seem to be any major struggle for either of these mothers. Therefore, the movie basically doesn’t highlight the real issues that a single mother has to go through; except the fact that when being a single mother, it is really hard to have a life outside of being a mother. This is something that I struggle with and can relate to on a daily basis; in that I am home with my kids practically 24/7, 365 and do not really have a social life. So instead of showcasing the everyday problems single mothers go through, this movie really just represents a way for single mothers to get together and help each other be more social and who can understand what it is like to raise children on your own.

In each of these artifacts, we see several single, white mothers, who all have their own story, and are told in a different way. First we had Lorelai in Gilmore Girls who had her daughter at a young age, and whose lifestyle and attitude are better suited to be a best friend and not a mother. Who is shown to have struggles with finances, but has support when things get too bad. The father of her child is not really around, especially early on in the series, and she has problems finding a man to share her life with. Then on the other end, we have (name) from the television show Mom, who clearly has had several issues in her life from having her first child at a very young age, to having financial problems, to even having problems with alcohol abuse and gambling addictions. However, this is a more realistic view of the stereotype associated with being a single mother, poor, had kids when at a young age, yet independent, and doesn’t have help from other people. Lastly, there is the film The Single Moms Club that gives us a different portrayal of single mother’s altogether. Here, both single white mothers are well-off in terms of financially, and the only significant issue is the fact that they do not really have other people in their lives that are facing the same problems, and together join a group where they can get support. Each of these different portrayals of the life of a single, white mother really does not depict the reality of how a one really lives. The struggles that they go through, the way they are looked at by other, the true identity of a single mother, is not shown in either of these artifacts, and certainly not my identity.  Of course, not everyone is going to be the same, and people are going to go through different struggles and have different ideas of what a single mother should be seen as in popular culture, but the point is that the negative aspect behind the idea of a single mother, and the positive things that are accomplished by the average single mother are really not highlighted at all throughout these artifacts, and it is a shame that not one can hit the nail on the head when it comes to portraying a character to fit the mold that most single mothers go through.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Works Cited

Calvin, Ritch. “Gilmore Girls and The Politics of Identity” Essays on Family and Feminism in the Television Series. 2008. Print.

It’s All About (Street) Cred

skyline

“This is my kind of town, _______ is! My kind of town, _______ is!” As soon as one hears the trumpets blare up behind Frank Sinatra belting out these familiar lyrics, only one thing comes to mind: Chicago.

Endearingly known by many different nicknames, such as the Second City and the City That Works (City of Chicago) amongst both locals and non-residents, Chicago has made numerous contributions to the world in a multitude of areas over the years. These advancements in all areas of life have resulted in it being the “talk of the town” as much within its own city limits as outside of them for the better part of its existence. In spite of achieving feats such as being the home of the debut of the world’s very first Ferris wheel (City of Chicago), in recent years, the City of Big Shoulders has seen its reputation deteriorate considerably. This is especially pronounced in the media and popular culture’s portrayal of what it (allegedly) is really like there. As a native of the Windy City, I am here to set the record straight.

To start: the bad. These days, with songs such as the underground hit Chiraq by Nicki Minaj, herself a prolific rapper with huge amounts of popularity, containing explicit lyrics about Chicago’s epidemic of gang violence, I would imagine it is exceedingly difficult for a non-native to have any concept of Chicago being a safe place. For example, lines such as “ain’t yelling cut when it’s shooting time / sign up, it’s recruiting time / big wigs with a suit and tie” (AZLyrics) and “don’t let a single thing get by ‘em / king pins and them drug lords / chi-town, no gun laws” (AZLyrics) and “rolled out with some Latin Kings and some eses and them plain khakis” (AZLyrics) are commenting, respectively, on the normalcy associated for some people to join a gang, the frequency of firearm-related violence and the casualness associated with hanging out with known gang members. Songs such as this do serious harm to the reputation of the city because young people, in all likelihood, will listen to a rap song that is growing in popularity amongst his or her social group much sooner than he or she would look up hard statistics on the types and circumstances of violent crimes in Chicago.

chiraq

However, that is not to say that such statistics are not easily accessible. It is absolutely true that there is an epidemic of violence in Chicago. Keeping track of it is a sad reality for not only the police and the loved ones of the victims, but also for the media. Nationally renowned newspaper the Chicago Tribune keeps a detailed record of homicides that happened in Chicago, with breakdowns of the data by month and location within the city, in addition to the names of each victim. While it is comforting to know that the memory of these lost souls lives on, it is still deeply upsetting to know that since 01 January of this year, 387 homicides have been recorded within city limits (Chicago Tribune). This contributes to a reputation of a widespread lack of security, especially when the map shows that the majority of these murders were committed on the city’s West and South sides. These two sections of the city are among the most populous. However, they both occupy a clear first place in terms of contributing to the notoriety of Chicago’s gang and violence problems.

chiraq_2

Recent memory gives us Barack Obama, well known for having gotten his political starts in grassroots community organisations in Chicago, as well as television shows such as Chicago PD, which follows “the Intelligence Unit of the Chicago PD [which] is run by Hank Voight, a man who was originally introduced as a criminal who had very little respect for doing things by the book,” (Highfill) only embellish this supposition that Chicago is a dangerous, corrupt city. This is augmented by the fact that “the entirety of Chicago PD‘s first season was about how far one man [Voight] would go to put the right people behind bars, and how far he would go if he were betrayed,” (Highfill). Voight was repeatedly shown to be cooperating with and even going so far as financially supporting questionable individuals who only helped him out due to an agreement that he would turn a blind eye to their illegal activities in exchange for information on an as-needed basis.

hankvoight

This is problematic, due to the fact that songs such as Chiraq and shows such as Chicago PD can carry much more weight in helping to form someone’s opinion of Chicago than they are even intended to. From my context as a native of the Windy City, I think it is accurate and appropriate to comment on the gang violence and the corruption within local government because these are widely known phenomena accepted as fact. However, by focusing so much on just these two aspects, the reputation of the city as a whole is diminished considerably.

As such, it is absolutely necessary to consider some of the more lighthearted, less dark things that Chicago is known for. For example, in the video Sh*t Chicagoans Say, around the 0:23 mark, the comment “our skyline is way better than New York’s” is pointedly made. As a matter of pride, this is a very passive-aggressive nod, and also a reminder to the viewer, to Willis Sears Tower’s decades-long holding of the rank of the tallest building in the world. And as well it should be, because the Sears Tower was and for that matter, still is, a beacon and potent symbol of American ingenuity and prowess. Chicago historically has been and continues to be one of the main powerhouses driving the American economy.

In spite of occasional and sometimes rampant governmental mismanagement, such as the comment made about Rahm Emanuel, mayor of Chicago, being mistaken for a parking metre at the 0:43 mark in Sh*t Chicagoans Say (due to Emanuel having shed responsibility of on-street parking to a private company instead of a city-run parking authority-like entity, thus eliminating millions of dollars in revenue per year for the city), Chicago continues to be a regional and global hub for creativity and innovation, among other world-renowned and celebrated attractions. This is underscored by Chicago being home to “dozens of cultural institutions, historical sites and museums, more than 200 theatres, nearly 200 art galleries and more than 7.300 restaurants” in addition to “26 miles of lakefront, 15 miles of bathing beaches, 36 annual parades, 19 miles of lakefront bicycle paths and 552 parks,” (City of Chicago).

theatre

Simply put, Chicago is much more than Barack Obama and homicide. Chicago is a sea of beautiful skyscrapers which “create a sense of might: of labor, industry, and commerce. As a body of architecture, they are a glorious portrait and instance of the productive facet of the American character; one of our best facets,” (Maidman). Chicago is a hub for tourism on all levels. Chicago is insanely delicious food. Perhaps just as well known as violence about Chicago is its food. Succinctly put: “If you think deep-dish pizza and ketchup-free hot dogs are all there is to understanding Chicago food, you’ve got another thing coming. Chicago is a city of many, many neighborhoods, all of which come with their own culinary traditions. It leaves the city’s residents with an embarrassment of riches when it comes to the diverse dishes that are often only a hop on the ‘L’ away,” (Erbentraut). In addition to the technological and engineering breakthroughs touched on earlier, Chicago is also known for its numerous culinary innovations.

popcornjibarito

To name a few, this innovation entails such well known and home-grown dishes as Chicago mix popcorn, a blend of cheese and caramel flavours, and the jibarito, a Latin-style sandwich with deep fried plantains instead of bread, which was “invented at Borinquen Restaurant in Humboldt Park and is one of the most distinctive dishes that traces its roots to Chicago,” (Erbentraut). In addition, various famous chefs call Chicago their base of operations for the most famous restaurants to round out a beautifully varied and impressively thorough culinary offering to anyone who should find themself passing through.

It is precisely this that one must keep in mind when pondering Chicago. The City of Big Shoulders is exactly that: a city of big shoulders. On them is carried a great weight, with all the characteristics of any large city. There is good, there is bad, there is ugly and there is everything in between, but no single characteristic should, or for that matter, does define it.

bigshoulders

Bibliography

“Facts & Statistics.” City of Chicago. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2014. <http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/about/facts.html&gt;.

“Chicago Homicides.” Crime in Chicagoland. Chicago Tribune, n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2014. <http://crime.chicagotribune.com/chicago/homicides&gt;.

“”Chi-Raq” Lyrics.” AZLyrics. AZLyrics, n.d. Web. 18 Nov. 2014. <http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/nickiminaj/chiraq.html&gt;.

Highfill, Samantha. “‘Chicago PD’ Season 2 Premiere React: The Evolution of Hank Voight | EW.com.” EW.com. EW.com, 24 Sept. 2014. Web. 18 Nov. 2014. <http://insidetv.ew.com/2014/09/24/chicago-pd-season-2-premiere-react/&gt;.

Erbentraut, Joseph. “26 Food Things Only A Chicagoan Would Understand.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 08 Apr. 2014. Web. 18 Nov. 2014. <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/04/08/foods-only-chicago-understands_n_5087204.html&gt;.

Maidman, Daniel. “In Praise of the Bean: Anish Kapoor’s “Cloud Gate,” Millennium Park, Chicago.” The Huffington Post. TheHuffingtonPost.com, 20 Feb. 2013. Web. 18 Nov. 2014. <http://www.huffingtonpost.com/daniel-maidman/in-praise-of-the-bean-anish-kapoor-cloud-gate_b_2695938.html&gt;.

Vietnamese War

War is a state of usually open and declared armed hostile conflict between states or nations.  Moreover, they want to show off the power of the country or greed, inconsistency between two countries. So wars start happen.  It makes human’s life become suffer, and difficult.  In the pop Culture, American people always think and never forget Vietnamese’s war whenever they look at Vietnamese people.  In the past, there have been a lot of wars in Vietnamese history. Such as, China control of Dai Co Viet, France controls all Viet Nam, and Japanese control Viet Nam. At that time, people lived a difficult life and lived a nightmare “Hell life.” Moreover, the war made people lose their house or property and many people lost their family members. It is extremely important to see how the war affect to people life in the view of popular culture. According to “Vietnam War Short Film “by Austin Wieland and Shane Bagwell on YouTube on February 18, 2014. It talked about Vietnamese’ war.  At the first beginning of the film, they used American old man for an example. He was sleeping on the sofa and dreaming. The Vietnam’s war were appearing in his dream. He saw many things in his dream such as: Bomb was destroyed villages, dead body, and injured. After the movie I can tell the old man probability was the American army before and he attended to Vietnams’ war. That’s why he has nightmare about it.  Moreover, the war is over but everyone will never forget those difficult dates of suffering life by war. After the film the send the message that “There were about one million lifetime cases of PTSD as a result of the Vietnam war.“ There are a lot of wars in Vietnam’s history but the most famous and also biggest event in Vietnam’s history was North and South were united in 1976. There are many advantage and disadvantage for this war, and the difference of view between American people and Vietnamese people about the war.

The Vietnam War was an armed conflict between North and South Vietnam.  At that time, the North followed the communist regime, and they called the south “Viet Cong”. They were against South and South’s partner was the United State. According to “Vietnam War” in the history article, the author told about the war between South and North in Viet Nam. The war began in 1954, when Ho Chi Minh and his party community controlled in the North. At that time, they tried to against the cold war the Soviet Union and United States’ army. At that time, there were more than three million people killed by war. In 1969, there were 500,000 U.S military participated in Viet Nam conflict. One more important evident film to see how the war affect to people life in the view of popular culture. According to “Vietnam 1968 – War Short Film” by David Bradbury on Youtube on August 7, 2014. He talked about Southern Vietnam 1968. In the film they showed the panoramic of war like gun fighting, and the chase scene killed each other. Moreover, in the film they showed the brutality of the war affected to people’s lives such as: many soldier was killed by war and injured soldiers. On the last film people can see a Vietnamese soldier with disappointed face.  Then in 1973 the U.S. president ordered all the U.S. army to withdraw. The communists forced and controlled Saigon. Vietnam War was ending, and North and South Vietnam were united as the Socialist Republic of Vietnam in 1975.

The difference of view between American people and Vietnamese people about the war. In fact, American people look at the war in popular culture about Vietnamese war, and they believe that war was an intentional mistake, and it was so wrong and immoral. Most of the soldier who attended Vietnam’s’ war, and came back said that “They were harassed by anti-war civilians, but these account should not be accepted until systematic investigation confirms them.” According to ” Coming to Terms With Defeat: Post-Vietnam America and the Post-Civil War South” by Gaines M. Foster in VQR, on December 12, 2003. He talked about the war between American and Vietnam. The war makes for American people angry. Some of the soldier said ” Many talk of trying to hide their service; others who did not or could not because of injury, recount sad tales of harassment by angry or scornful fellow citizens. “Did you kill any babies?” they say people asked them. They tell of a passerby looking at their empty sleeve and hissing, “Serves you right” or of anti-war protesters spitting on them. The image of being spit on by civilians.” In addition, the veterans said that they felt defilement, and embarrassing about their action, and they had a sense which society condemned their actions and rejected them as unclean. On the other hand, Vietnamese confederate has a difference look in popular culture. People believe that those soldiers are brave because they didn’t care about their life to protect the country.  Even though the Vietnamese confederate soldiers were fail in the war, they were welcomed and embraced by Vietnamese community. The soldiers said “Confederate soldiers, too, worried about whether defeat dishonored them, but few recounted tales of scorn. They talked instead of how Southerners warmly embraced them. A one-armed veteran likely met not a hostile comment but a bevy of adoring females. Towns throughout the South staged picnics and celebrations to welcome their soldiers. More important, in the 10 to 15 years after the Confederate surrender, Southerners built Confederate cemeteries, erected funereal monuments, and held yearly memorial celebrations in honor of the dead and the veterans” by Gaines M. Foster. These celebrations and memorials are celebrated every years for the soldiers who was sacrificed to protect for the country. It is the pride of Vietnamese community and the country also.

In short, there are many advantage and disadvantage of this war, and the difference of view between American people and Vietnamese people about the war. The advantage is that Vietnamese war help for united the country. However, the disadvantage war is that it killed many people, destroyed many house and property, and people’s life is difficult in this sociality like lose their family members, lose all the house, and property. Moreover, the difference of the view between American people and Vietnamese people about the war is American people believe that war was an intentional mistake. It was so wrong and immoral which their country has done. That’s why the U.S citizens were very angry when their soldiers return, although they were win in the war. On the other hand, the Vietnamese people were very happy and proud of their soldiers because most of soldiers was sacrificed to protect the country. In my opinion, I think the war should not be happen because it is a big problem which affect to people in the both countries in the war life such as: people are suffering about finance, life, lost probability, and lost a member in the family. It is not necessary fight each other. Instead of fighting, American and Vietnam should be friend and cooperate with each other to make the country stronger. On the contrary, in Vietnam both North and South shouldn’t being racist because we are living in the same country and they should accord together to against the enemy. Pass through every war, since many things have happened and finally North and South Vietnam became friend, and people are living in peaceful life. So people in Viet Nam will never forget this event and every year they make a ceremony like every house needs to hang Vietnamese flag, School and companies have a permission to close in this day to memory for this event.

 

 

Works Cited

Bradbury, David. “Vietnam 1968 – War Short Film.” YouTube. YouTube, 7 Aug. 2014. Web. 02 Dec. 2014.. “https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PxiR1sZUGQ8

 

Foster, Gaines M. “Coming to Terms With Defeat: Post-Vietnam America and the Post-Civil War South.” VQR. N.p., 12 Dec. 2003. Web. 02 Dec. 2014. “http://www.vqronline.org/essay/coming-terms-defeat-post-vietnam-america-and-post-civil-war-south

 

“Vietnam War History.” History.com. A&E Television Networks, 2009. Web. 02 Dec. 2014.” http://www.history.com/topics/vietnam-war/vietnam-war-history

 

Wieland, Bagwel. “Vietnam War Short Film (PTSD).” YouTube. YouTube, 18 Feb. 2014. Web. 02 Dec. 2014.” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L6xcRFvL6Ms&spfreload=10

 

Twenty-year-old females portrayed in the media

Hannah Maculsay

Twenty-year-old females portrayed in the media

December 2nd 2014

 

How Twenty-year-old females are portrayed in the media

Social media became a big part of civilization as early as the two thousands. With the rise of upcoming social medias, places, new technology, Popular Culture has transformed a lot through twenty-year-old females. As many people between the ages of ten through middle aged, social media is a huge necessity that is apart of everyday life. Twenty-year-old females go though the struggles of finding that they are and mostly expressing themselves in so many different ways. In previous generations twenty-year-old females would not worry about the constant insecurity of how well dressed or how thin they need to be. It seems as if there is only one thing on a young woman’s mind; which is too protect their image as much as they can. It is extremely important to see how twenty-year-old females are viewed in popular culture.

Cailin Russo is a phenomenal twenty-year-old female model that plays Justin Bieber’s girlfriend in his music video called, “All that matters”. By having the main role in this music video, her modeling career skyrocketed and is now one of the top young female models in the world. The music video gives a sexual connotation to further understand he relationship between the pair. Justin Bieber and Cailin Russo exchange lips throughout the video which made all of Bieber fans wondering, who is the new girl he is dating? With that being said, music videos have been around as early as the 80s. Music Videos that talk about dating, love, or even sexual preferences, often portrays a fantasy love life that most young twenty-year-old girls thrive on. When in reality, Justin and Cailin convey that it is easy to be in a relationship with another person. The video has mood lighting to show the romantics between the two, however if the video color scheme wasn’t blue and red, the video can show the realism that the couple stages. Cailin has blonde hair with green eyes and since she models, she has the slim figure all girls want. Other females who watch this video look up to her because she shows that this is what Justin wants in a girl. The camera angles that are used show close ups of the bottom half of her body. She portrays that this is the way one has to look in order to fulfill Justin Bieber’s needs. The entertainment channel, “E!” gives all the hot gossip on what is going on in all celebrities. As soon as the news is posted on the “E” website, Cailin and Justin’s popularity rating went up. This video was a hit for a month and made twenty year old woman really think about their image and what is important to show off. Most women can agree that music videos interpret things that are not realistic.

Instagram came out in 2010 and is an apple application for people to post pictures for Instagram viewers to “like” their photos. Twenty-year-old female, Jen Selter has nearly one million followers on Instagram due to her derriere. Her Instagram mainly attracts males because of her workout pictures. It is inevitable that men thrive on her Instagram because of her undeniable physique, however females her age look up to her because she models that working out at this day and age is ideal for a twenty year old. There are many controversies over her Instagram because some argue whether it is inappropriate or some viewers are offended. Her point is to make it clear that she works really hard for her body and that it is healthy. It would be a more positive influence on twenty-year-old females if she posted more on how to eat healthy foods, rather than just show off her body and take provocative. That is what makes young females get the ideal look t Instagram and when you have someone posting pictures on how a female should look like, it can be disheartening to some, or inspirational.

http://www.teenvogue.com

There are numerous magazines to promote the latest trends all around the world. Teen Vogue is an amazing fashion magazine to give young adults ideas of different styles that are being worn right that minute. Throughout the last part of the magazine are models posing in different outfits to promote all kinds of designers. Yes, there is such diversity within the race of the models, however seeing plus size models seems very limited. By understanding that designers only create a certain amount of sizes, it can really create image issues for young adults by only seeing that there is one body type in order to fit these trendy outfits. Teen Vogue magazine provides beauty tips, health talk, and personal stories told by individuals around the world. This magazine has had numerous impacts around the world, but something to improve on would definitely be finding more body type models. However, a magazine that shows all body types is called, “Seventeen” magazine. The magazine always had fun colors to attract the readers and for seventeen year old woman to build a trusting relationship with the magazine. There are all kinds of fashion magazines, but there aren’t all types of body types that are modeled in the magazine.

I am truly grateful that I didn’t grow up on the idea of caring what other people think of me. I am a twenty-year-old female and looking at what children have to grow up with now really makes me think how we can change our popular culture back to how it used to be. For an example, what ever happened to playing outside and using your imagination? Instead young adolescents are worried about the next Instagram they should post to see what can get a lot of likes, or how thin they want to look for a celebrity, and how trendy they want to dress in order to impress their figures. It is always an instinct to follow the trends and to be in good shape, but caring about body image can put so much stress on the human body. I am very fortunate of what I have surrounded myself with and hopefully in the future twenty-year-old females can improve the impact we are making today.

 

Bibliography

 

“Instagram – Fast, Beautiful Photo Sharing for Your IPhone.” Instagram. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2014.

 

“Teen Vogue: Fashion, Beauty, Entertainment News for Teens.” Teenvogue Content. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2014.

 

ouTube. YouTube, n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2014.

 

“Instagram Star Has an Enviable Rear – and 1.3M Followers.” New York Post. N.p., n.d. Web. 02 Dec. 2014.

Young female writers in media

 

Young Female Writers: It’s all about the romance but never happy endings

By Allegra Lopez

female writer with typewriter

Writers. Writers are portrayed in many ways when it comes to popular culture. Some are shown as messy, some as broke, some successful, and others trying desperately to make a name for themselves. But writers are generally shown as males in a lot of popular culture. So then what about females? I researched the term ‘young female writer’ to see how they were portrayed in television and movies. It seemed like every single cultural artifact I looked at involved a storyline filled with heavy romance. Furthermore, in two out of the three sources I looked at, the storylines ended with the female writer picking work over love. This was incredibly interesting as the main character from each was at a different point in her career—beginning, middle, or end—yet the romance was always, always present. But I suppose they had to be—that seemed to be the only way for the young female writer to be independent and, in turn successful. So with that I came to the conclusions that according to media, a young female writer is independent though troubled with a stumbling, messy love story that gets in the way of her success.

            The first television show I looked at was the ever popular, seven season worthy show The Gilmore Girls. The young female writer in this show is Rory, the daughter of the great mother-daughter duo. Rory is a budding journalist who seems to be constantly working in her school’s newspaper (both high school and college). She is smart, witty, a hard worker, and pretty easy on the eyes. She’s a very ‘good girl’ character in her younger years—a habit which she loses the older she gets. Throughout the story she falls in love with various guys, having three steady boyfriends throughout the show (don’t worry not all at once). Considering this, it is no surprise I found romance being heavily involved with the plot lines of female writers is apparent across all three of my sources—though more on that later. Throughout the seven seasons she has ‘revelations’ about her work and career—the most important being the one that causes her to really dedicate her time to being a journalist. This one comes after hooking up with an ex-boyfriend who has become a successful author. She then goes on to college in later seasons and begins interning at a newspaper where she is told she wasn’t meant for a journalism job and she should just quit. This is of course fires Rory up to prove this wrong. The series continues with Rory becoming more independent, having a great time with her boyfriend, having a brief period of turmoil about what to do with her life. Of course everything falls into place and all seems well by the end of the series. Except it’s not really. At the end she is faced with marriage or ‘freedom’ to pursue her career, and like the independent woman she is—she picks her career. Everything about Rory screams ‘drama’ which I found seems to be an extremely important part to any story with a writer in it. The trials and tribulations of becoming one is hard after all (look at poor old J.K. Rowling who struggled before finding success). Still, this seems like the very typical story of ‘booklover’ to ‘professional writer’. Oh, and one more slight thing? Apparently if you’re a hard-working aspiring female writer, you can play around with guys all you want but there aren’t any ‘happy endings’ in romance if you want to be successful.

            In the second source I looked at, a movie called Young Adult, the main character Mavis was at the end of her career, writing the last chapter of a book series that was cancelled. In this story the female writer was portrayed as messy, not very put together, and possibly even a little crazy—well maybe more than a little crazy. The plot line deals with Mavis being convinced that she should be with an ex-boyfriend who is already married and has a kid and therefore tries to get between the happy family. The entire story is presented in a comedic fashion—making fun of the ‘tortured writer’ more than anything else. This author was shown to be so extreme, and so completely mental that the word ‘tortured’ came to mind—though not in the typical way that I would imagine when thinking of the tortured artist. This movie takes it to ridiculous levels. However, you’ll notice that just like Rory, Marvis’ storyline deals heavily with the idea of romance as she is convinced that she should be with this ex-boyfriend and is attempting to get him back. Of course in the end she sleeps with another person from her past and has the wonderful revelation that she needs to move on. Spoiler alert: the movie ends with her putting all behind her, ending her book series, and ending up—surprise surprise, alone.  While it hopefully ends the tale of her craziness and shows her independence and ability to be on her own, it strangely contrasts Rory’s ending. While Rory was able to have a budding career, Mavis finds herself thinking the end of her book series may be the end of her success.

            The popular television show that premiered on HBO in April twenty-twelve (and is still running with a new season planned for twenty-fifteen), Girls has a main character named Hannah who is an aspiring writer. Hannah’s story begins in turmoil as she is cut off from her finances and left to fend for herself. Her stories throughout the first three seasons show her struggles of finding a job to tide over her financial situation and dealing with her ‘friend with benefits’ and then ‘on again off again boyfriend’ Adam. So basically like any good television show, it has drama and lots of it. Hannah finds herself working at a law firm for a little bit and then a coffee shop in the second season; something I found humorous as there’s a stereotype of an author working in a coffee shop on their manuscript but here Hannah is working in a coffee shop as an actual barista. Hannah’s character is portrayed as an attractive twenty something year old with her fair deal of problems—a fact that definitely draws people in as it makes her feel real. While she does seem to find success at one time—finding an editor and getting an ebook deal, that slowly falls apart. After thinking about her love life, Hannah decides near the end of seasons three that she needs to get serious so she applies for a writing program, which (spoiler alert) she gets in the season three finale. I feel like out of the three source characters, Hannah is the most accurate representation of a young female writer as she doesn’t fit into any stereotype really—okay maybe the one about aspiring authors being broke but hey, I’m a young female writer and I’m broke too. Plus, despite the fact she does have that slightly irritating on again, off again relationship, she powers through a lot and ends up in a good place by the end of season three. Of course Hannah does become an independent woman like all authors seem to be portrayed as and the fact that she’s a well put together mess makes her seem very real (I guess since the premise of the show and lots of plot elements were based on Lena Dunham’s real life experiences). Still, I would be happier to be related to Hannah than I would to Mavis or even Rory.

             While I may not agree with all the plot lines and character aspects of the three characters from my main sources, I have to admit that there are a lot of things I see in myself. For instance, like Rory I was a book lover before an author and was very ‘prim and proper’ in high school but just as she changed in college, so did I. Then with Mavis, though her crazy tendencies are a bit over the top, even I have my crazy moments. Plus she seems to use her series as an escape—a reason why she doesn’t want to give it up, and I know I thought of my writing an escape when I started writing. Then there is Hannah. People have related my personality to hers before but I never bothered to watch the show until this assignment and I must say—I see the similarities. I do notice that overall a female writers plot line deals heavily with love—perhaps because authors are seen as romantics and I’m not going to lie—love is always on the mind in my other friends who are writers. Drama is also always present in these storylines as drama is almost always a part of life in general (just more so for writers apparently). However, it is notable that according to an article I read, females in general are more likely going to be part of a romance comedy or romance drama plotline (Azad). But the one thing that actually irritated me a little is that no matter the storyline, the character seems to end up alone but successful and independent. Perhaps this is a stand on the whole ‘women don’t need no man’ but I find it a little depressing that balance can’t be made. Perhaps Hannah will bring a new hope for happy endings whenever Girls finally comes to an end. For now though we can see the way that young female writers are portrayed: independent, successful gals who overcame drama and romance to end up alone. But while writing this a single question lingered into my mind. I wonder if the term tortured artist is not coined from troubles preset; but rather comes from the fact that the artist who hopes from something more creates trouble for themselves as they search for that something more. Whether it be in success, love, or anything else. It’s a curious question but one to save for a much later time. For now I’ll keep on writing vigorously and try to go against these stereotypes and take the whole package: success, independence, and romance. It’s time to write a story with a new ending.

 

 

 

 

 

Works Cited

Azad, Sifat. “Are Women in the Media Only Portrayed As Sex Icons? Statistics Show a Massive

Gender Imbalance Across Industries.” Identities.Mic. 20 Feb. 2012. Web. 16 Nov. 2014.

Gilmore Girls. Dir. Amy Sherman- Palladino. October 5th 2000. Television

Girls. Dir. Lena Dunham. April 15 2012. Television

Young Adult. Dir. Jason Reitman. Paramount Pictures, 2011. Film.