Saturday, December 8, 2007

Queen Latifah "Ladies' First" - Tyler Van Drei

The song can be listened to following this link to YouTube,

Lyrics can be found at:

Queen Latifah sang this song, it is a fairly old song as most people who know a lot about Queen Latifah already know. I would not say that I am a big fan of Queen Latifah in any degree but I have heard this song previously and did recognize it as elevating women, or being feminist. I found the song while searching through online lyrics. One of the first clues to me that this was a feminist song was how much she was saying this quote " Let me state the position: Ladies first, yes?" She is trying to put women, at the very least, on the same level as men but it seems like she is trying to elevate them above men by putting them first. Another quote that Queen Latifah uses is when she says " Believe me when I say being a woman is great," I think this is another demonstration that she is definitely a feminist and the song Ladies' First is also a feminist piece. Mainstream popular culture usually never focuses on controversial issues such as feminist however, Queen Latifah is well known as a powerful voice who expresses her opinions. That is what makes this song and Queen Latifah in general so special because she is voicing her approval of the feminist cause. I think this song does empower women, stating that women are great, they come first are all phrases of empowerment. However, I don't really think that this song fights oppression or suggests any changes that society could make to fix the problems that come with oppression. I definitely agree that if more musical artists sang about feminist issues and supported feminism that it would not seem so taboo to some people. The feminist cause could really use some more artists like Queen Latifah to actually voice their opinions and not be afraid of what society might think. If I had the option of saying anything to Queen Latifah I would thank her for actually having the willpower to stand up for a cause that she believes in whether it is feminism or some other cause. Being a feminist is not easy in our unforgiving society but she has done it well and has brought some awareness to the cause and for that she deserves a lot of praise.

-Tyler Van Drei

Friday, December 7, 2007

Independent Women Pt. 1 by Destinys Child

Link to Video:

Lucy Liu... with my girl, Drew... Cameron D. and Destiny
Charlie's Angels, Come on
Uh uh uh

Question: Tell me what you think about me
I buy my own diamonds and I buy my own rings
Only ring your cell-y when I'm feelin lonely
When it's all over please get up and leave
Question: Tell me how you feel about this
Try to control me boy you get dismissed
Pay my own fun, oh and I pay my own bills
Always 50/50 in relationships

The shoes on my feet (I've bought it)
The clothes I'm wearing I've bought it
The rock I'm rockin' I've bought it
'Cause I depend on me
If I wanted the watch you're wearin' I'll buy it
The house I live in I've bought it
The car I'm driving I've bought it
I depend on me (I depend on me)

All the women who are independent
Throw your hands up at me
All the honeys who makin' money
Throw your hands up at me
All the mommas who profit dollas
Throw your hands up at me
All the ladies who truly feel me
Throw your hands up at me

Girl I didn't know you could get down like that
Charlie, how your Angels get down like that
Girl I didn't know you could get down like that
Charlie, how your Angels get down like that

Tell me how you feel about this
Who would I want if I would wanna live
I worked hard and sacrificed to get what I get
Ladies, it ain't easy bein' independent
Question: How'd you like this knowledge that I brought
Braggin' on that cash that he gave you is to front
If you're gonna brag make sure it's your money you flaunt
Depend on noone else to give you what you want

The shoes on my feet I've bought it
The clothes I'm wearing I've bought it
The rock I'm rockin' I've bought it
'Cause I depend on me
If I wanted the watch you're wearin' I'll buy it
The house I live in I've bought it
The car I'm driving I've bought it
I depend on me (I depend on me)

All the women who are independent
Throw your hands up at me
All the honeys who makin' money
Throw your hands up at me
All the mommas who profit dollas
Throw your hands up at me
All the ladies who truly feel me
Throw your hands up at me

Girl I didn't know you could get down like that
Charlie, how your Angels get down like that
Girl I didn't know you could get down like that
Charlie, how your Angels get down like that

Destiny's Child
You in the house?
Sure 'nuff
We'll break these people off Angel style

Child of Destiny
Independent beauty
Noone else can scare me
Charlie's Angels

All the women who are independent
Throw your hands up at me
All the honeys who makin' money
Throw your hands up at me
All the mommas who profit dollas
Throw your hands up at me
All the ladies who truly feel me
Throw your hands up at me

Girl I didn't know you could get down like that
Charlie, how your Angels get down like that
(repeat until fade)

1. How did you find your song? Were you familiar with this artist’s work before?
- I knew of this song before. It was really popular when I was a Freshman in high school.
2. How does your song address issues of feminism, women’s rights or gender equality? Analyze the lyrics and quote from them to make your case that this is a feminist song.
- The song is related to feminism because it is about, as the song suggests, being “independent” from men. The lyrics tell a first-person view of a girl that is proud of herself to making her own money. She is buying herself all the items she wants like rings and shoes because she earned them. Later one, she criticizes women that show off the items their significant other bought them and says one can only brag if they earned it themselves without being dependent on another.
3. How does this song address an issue that is often ignored by mainstream popular culture?
- It addresses the issue of the rising of the working women in society. Women are now able to do what they want instead of staying at home and taking care of the house while their husband makes the money. It is promoting the limitless possibilities for women today.
4. Does this song make you feel empowered as a woman/human? Does the song suggest ways to fight for change in our society? Ways to overcome sexist gender oppression?
- Yes, the song makes me feel empowered as a woman. It reminds me to be proud that I am going to college to get an education instead of just being married and performing my “wife” duties. The song suggests for all independent women to stand up and be proud that they are.
5. Do you feel that if there were more songs like this in popular culture that feminism would become less threatening and more positively understood and respected?
- The song is kind of in-your-face, but I do believe more songs like this would encourage young girls to be their own. It definitely helps to have a moral singer. Beyonce is a powerful woman in today’s society, and is an excellent role models to teenagers.
6. What thoughts would you like to express to the artist of this song regarding her work, her music and her political ideals?
- I think Beyonce needs credit for promoting a positive image for young girls. I think she creates fascinating songs that about women’s power, and she should continue on in these ways.

Brittany Westerbeck

Heather Holley Blog # 5

So-What am i not s'pposed to have an opinion?
Should i be quiet because i'm a woman?
Call me a bitch (bitch) cause i speak what's on my mind
Guess it's easier for you to swallow if i sat and smiled

When a female fires back
suddenly target don't know how to act
So he does what any little boy would do
Makin' up a few false rumors or two
That for sure is not a man to me
Slanderin' names for popularity
It's sad you only get your fame through controversy
But now it's time for me to come and give you more to say

This is for my girls all around the world
Who have come across a man that don't respect your worth
Thinkin' all women should be seen, not heard
So what do we do girls?
Shout louder,
Letting them know we're gonna stand our ground (our ground)
So lift your hands high and wave'em proud (wohoh)
Take a deep breath and say it loud,
Never can,never will
Can't hold us down

Nobody can hold us down(us down)...Nobody can hold us down(us down)...Nobody can hold us down(hold us down)
Never can never will...

So what am i not supposed to say what i'm saying
Are you offended with the message i'm bringin'
Call me whatever 'cause your words don't mean a thing
Cuz you ain't even a man enough to handle what i sing
If you look back in history it's a common double standard of society
The guy gets all the glory, the more he can score
While the girl can do the same and yet you call her a whore
I don't understand why its OK,
The guy can get away with it while any girl gets named
All my ladies come together and make a change

Start a new beginning for us,everybody sing


Lil' Kim:
Here's something I just can't understand
If the guy have three girls then he's a man
He can either give her some head, or sex her raw
If the girl do the same, then she's a whore
But the table's about to turn
I'll bet my fame on it
Cats take my ideas and put their name on it
It's aight though, you can't hold me down
I got to keep on movin'
To all my girls with a man who be tryin to mack
Do it right back to him and let that be that
You need to let him know that his game is whack
And Lil' Kim and Christina Aguilera got your back

You're just a little boy,
Think you're so cute,so coy
You must talk so big, to make up for smaller things
You're just a little boy
All you'll do is annoy
You must talk so big, to make up for smaller things,
This is for my girls...

Repeat Chorus X2

Ahh Wahoo 7X ahh
Spread the word
Can't hold us down
Yeh we here
We Back again
Yeh Lil Kim and Christina Aguilera
Can't hold us down!

I actually listened to this song in high school, off of her then newly released album, “Stripped”. Back in the golden days of yore, I didn’t actually know what the words were getting at, I just liked the music and beat. Now looking at these lyrics I can understand the power message of double standards and societal expectations. They singers talk about many aspects of inequality; how when men sleep around or hustle women it’s supposed to mean that he is “the man” but when women do it she is a slut, when women talk about what they want and don’t take crap from their male counterparts how they are seen as a bitch. The central point being that when women have been with more than a certain number of men she is a slut or skank or what have you, and if she is fooling around while she is in a relationship that she is this horrible person who’s reputation gets slandered and attacked ten times more than any man’s would.
I think that the address to the issue of double standards between men and women in the sex circle is very often ignored in society. Women are normally told in a young age that they should not sleep with men and should wait til marriage or they are in love. But as a general rule men are seen to be the one sex that is allowed to be interested in sex and want to have it. When men cheat it seems more socially acceptable than when women cheat, because women are to be the more subdued sex that wouldn’t leave their partner and so on.
I wouldn’t say that the song makes me feel empowered, but it brings a lot of issues to hand. In a small sense it does make me feel more in control and in charge but only in a way that is showing society is trying to make a change to bring equality to the sexes, but I am not one to be with numerous people at the same time so in that regard, I cannot relate to the song.
I don’t know if I could say that this song will revolutionalize common thinking on ideals of sex, but I think that it makes a start. I can’t say that if the radio was bombarded by these types of song that are as intense as this one, that the nation would change. It is a very intense song, that focuses on a small portion of American culture, one that in my thinking is not at the top of the list for fixing. The double standards I find important but the way that sex as used as to represent those double standards may not be the best road to reach the public, it might actually cause a problem because of language and such.
I would like to tell the author I liked it, and it was insightful, but the to reach more people to get this point across it may have been better to take down the language a bit and possibly change the main focus point from sex to maybe dressing, or weight or something less vulgar.

"If He Tries Anything" by Ani Difranco: IAN MOY

I found this song randomly while looking for anything that pertained to this blog. I have never heard much of Ani Difranco's work before, only second hand things. I know that she has been famous or known for sometime. Here are the lyrics:
"If He Tries Anything"

I'm invincible
so are you
we do all the things
they say we can't do
we walk around
in the middle of the night
and if it's too far to walk
we just hitch a ride

we got rings of dirt
around our necks
we talk like auctioneers
and we bounce like checks
we smell like shit
still, when we walk down the street
all the boys line up
to throw themselves at our feet

I say I think he likes you
you say I think he do too
go and get him girl
before he gets you
I'll be watching you
from the wings
I will come to your rescue
if he tries anything

it's a long long road
it's a big big world
we are wise wise women
we are giggling girls
we both carry a smile
to show when we're pleased
we both carry a switchblade
in our sleeves

tell you one thing
I'm gonna make noise when I go down
for ten square blocks
they're gonna know I died
all the goddesses will come up
to the ripped screen door
and say,
what do you want, dear?
and I'll say,
I want inside

I say I think he likes you
you say I think he do too
go and get him girl
before he gets you
I'll be watching you
from the wings
I will come to your rescue
if he tries anything

I'm not to sure if this song exhibits extremely strong feminist qualitites but the lines such as "get him girl before he gets you" or "we talk like auctioneers
and we bounce like checks
we smell like shit
still, when we walk down the street
all the boys line up
to throw themselves at our feet" are feminist lines because the second line i mentioned says that no matter what men will still be about women so take advantage of that ladies. The line "get him girl before he ges you" is goo also because in many relationships the men gain the power in the relationship and often this leads to abuses committed toward the women. The message that is being ignored by mainstream media is the bonds of sisterhood or protection women have between one another, a sort of leaning system. This song tells the girls to be more proactive in their interactions have an extended sense of confidence and not be controlled. So in essence ist is explaining how to stop gender oppression. I think this is a perfect example of a piece of work that would help make feminism look less threatening in the eyes of mainstream society. Because she isn't threatening towards the opposite sex or attacking others, she is merely empowering the disenfranchised women. I read that Ani Difranco is an active feminist and has won awards for her work in the fields of women's rights and her musics contribution.

Reba McEntire-Fancy: Jacqui Duthie

-I found this song “Fancy” by Reba McEntire from one of my cds. I have a few of her cds, so I am aware of her music.

-Well, this song is about a mother forcing her daughter sell herself to men to make money for the family. The mother wants the daughter to look “fancy” so she would get paid more. The lyrics state that the family was poor and the mother could not find a job. That is when she sent her daughter out on the street.

-This song is a story about a family that is struggling and made sacrifices. The mainstream ignores these stories because people do not want to hear why women sell themselves. People just think of the stereotypes and do not want to know the real reason.

-I think this song is empowering. This song is about a girl who was trying to help her family and would have don’t anything. I do not think this song will change society. Only because I do not feel that people would want to help the lives of prostitutes. Some people can be stubborn.

-I do not think if there were more song like this that it would not be understood. The mainstream music business does not want to hear about hardship of feminism and women’s rights. To be honest, most popular songs out today are about having sex and doing drugs.

-I think Reba McEntire’s work is amazing. She has many songs that are about different needs and issues that because do not notice. She had a television show that was about a family, and during that show they covered many different issues.


Martina McBride Independence Day

The song Independence Day was released on Martina McBride's album in 1993--she then released it as a single in 1994--it was written by Gretchen Peters. The lyrics tell the story of a woman's domestic abuse. The video shows this from her daughter's point of view. The song's video was controversial at the time due to the graphic scenes of domestic abuse. The lyrics had a double meaning; the woman in the story is finally gaining her freedom from the abusive husband--the video shows her starting her house on fire with her in it--it is her independence day and the event happens on July 4th, America's Independence Day. These are the words to the song:

Well she seemed alright by dawn's early light, though she looked a little worried and week She tried to pretend she wasn't drinking again, but daddy left the proof on her cheek I was only eight years old that summer, and I always seemed to be in the way, so I took myself down to the fair in town on Independence Day

Well word gets around in a small, small town, they said he was a dangerous man Mama was proud and she stood her ground, but she knew she was on the losin' end Some folks whispered and some folks talked but everybody looked the other way and when time ran out there was no one about On Independence Day

(Chorus) Let freedom ring, let the white dove sing Let the whole world know that today is a day of reckoning Let the weak be strong, let the right be wrong Roll the stone away, let the guilty pay It's Independence Day

Well she lit up the sky that Fourth of July by the time that the firemen come They just put out hte flames, and took down some names and sent me to the county home Now I ain't saying it's right or it's wrong but maybe it's the only way Talk about your revolution It's Independence Day! (Repeat Chorus)

I used this song because I have always liked Martina McBride and her music--I thought this was an appropriate song for domestic abuse. I think when the lyrics say "Mama was proud and she stood her ground" talks of her strength as a woman. I think that at the time this song was released, domestic abuse was not in the public eye as it is now and this song and this video I think may have put a face to the women who are abused, it also talked of how people look away and feel it is not their problem, but domestic abuse is everyone's problem and everyone should share in not tolerating abuse to anyone. I feel thru the chorus of this song it may give a sense of power and maybe some guts to go out there and get help or to be empowered to help others. I feel that Martina McBride has addressed many issues in a lot of her songs if you listen to them. She is a beautiful person inside and out and has used her music and charity to help many people.

Blog#5: Music Jenny Walton

WS 200: BLOG #5
Jenny Walton
“Goodbye Earl”: written by Dennis Lynde, performed by “Dixie Chicks”, 2000.

Mary Anne and Wanda were the best of friends
All through their high school days
Both members of the 4H club
Both active in the FFA
After graduation Mary Anne went out lookin'
for a bright new world
Wanda looked all around this town
And all she found was Earl

Well it wasn't two weeks
After she got married that
Wanda started gettin' abused
She put on dark glasses and long sleeved blouses
And make up to cover a bruise
Well she finally got the nerve to file for divorce
She let the law take it from there
But Earl walked right through that restraining order
And put her in intensive care
Right away Mary Anne flew in from Atlanta
On a red eye midnight flight
She held Wanda's hand as they
Worked out a plan
And it didn't take 'em long to decide
That Earl had to die

Goodbye Earl
Those black-eyed peas
They tasted all right to me Earl
You're feelin' weak
Why don't you lay down
And sleep Earl
Ain't it dark
Wrapped up in that tarp Earl

The cops came by to bring Earl in They searched the house
High and low
Then they tipped their hats
And said "thank you ladies if you hear from him let us know"
Well the weeks went by and
Spring turned to Summer
And Summer faded into Fall
And it turns out he was a missing person
Who nobody missed at all
So the girls bought some land
And a roadside stand
Out on Highway 109
They sell Tennessee ham
And strawberry jam
And they don't
Lose any sleep at night 'cause
Earl had to die

Goodbye Earl
We need a break
Let's go out to the lake Earl
We'll pack a lunch
And stuff you in the trunk Earl
Well is that all right
Good Let's go for a ride
Earl Hey


This song, “Goodbye Earl”, stands out to me as one of the best to address the issue of spouse abuse. Although I don’t agree with the outcome of Wanda and Mary Anne killing Earl, the fact that they stood up to Earl (when the law couldn’t do more than they had), and took care of the problem by removing him from the picture together, is a social problem often overlooked. In the lyrics, the girls’ lives are stereotyped as in what they do in high school as in 4H and FFA. These are clubs to be in for many rural kids, which makes this song appealing to high-school age kids. Mary Ann left their hometown, went off to find herself and was more independent. Wanda was more traditional and got married, not looking far, for “all she found was Earl”, and was abused after they were married. It seems that Wanda had a spark of independence for she filed for divorce and had a restraining order on Earl. I have personal experience with this issue and to be able to stand up and be heard is very difficult to do. Many women world-wide are killed by their spouse when restraining orders are issued and/or divorces are initiated. Mary Ann came back to Wanda’s rescue as a good friend would do and helped her find a solution that would work since the law didn’t. It seems that Earl wasn’t well-liked because the town didn’t miss him after all and the girls went on with their lives, remaining friends. This song, although as I have stated that I don’t like the outcome (would have rather seen him rot in prison), shows what solidarity between women can accomplish. The “Dixie Chicks” are well-known to be a controversial band and they have taken political stands against wars, spousal abuse and issues such as the need for all people to be independent and true to themselves, not just what society expects.

Mitch Bruss-"I am not a pretty girl"

Song can be viewed at:

Lyrics:"Not A Pretty Girl"

I am not a pretty girl
that is not what I do
I ain't no damsel in distess
and I don't need to be rescued
so put me down punk
maybe you'd prefer a maiden fair
isn't there a kitten stuck up a tree somewhere

I am not an angry girl
but it seems like I've got everyone fooled
every time I say something they find hard to hear
they chalk it up to my anger
and never to their own fear
and imagine you're a girl
just trying to finally come clean
knowing full well they'd prefer you
were dirty and smiling

and I am sorry
I am not a maiden fair
and I am not a kitten stuck up a tree somewhere

and generally my generation
wouldn't be caught dead working for the man
and generally I agree with them
trouble is you gotta have youself an alternate plan
and I have earned my disillusionment
I have been working all of my life
and I am a patriot
I have been fighting the good fight
and what if there are no damsels in distress
what if I knew that and I called your bluff?
don't you think every kitten figures out how to get down
whether or not you ever show up

I am not a pretty girl
I don't want to be a pretty girl
no I want to be more than a pretty girl

I stumbled across this song because my girlfriend recommended to me. She is a huge Ani Difranco and when I told her about the assignment, her eyes widen and she yelled: “Ani Difranco, Ani Difranco!!!”. She was so excited that some of her enthusiasm rubbed off on me and I decided to go with Ani even though I had never heard of her before. Moreover, this is about a woman coming to grips with living in a male center society. The woman in the song is tired of being talk down to her entire life and tired of people thinking that she needs help, and can’t do things herself: “ I am not a kitten stuck up a tree somewhere”. The song also addresses the fact that all women do not want to be what society and the mainstream media tell them to be as seen in the title of the song and recurring lyrics of: “I am not a pretty girl”.
I can’t really say that this song makes me feels empowered as a female because I am not a female. However, I feel that I can identify with that the artist is saying and how she feels about her situation. The song does not really suggest ways to fight the powers that be, but rather, encourages women to not let other people and the media set their standards of living and what it means to be happy. Again, the song is not really about fighting oppression, but more about changing the way you approach society so that you may be immune to its rash and meaningless tendencies.
I cannot really say that if there were more songs like this that it would change how feminisms is viewed and understood. The reason I say this is because most people won’t listen to this song over and over again trying to uncover the hidden medium. I think feminism would be better served if it tried to communicate in a difference venue other than music (I think entertainment/movies/theater would better serve feminism). Lastly, I feel that this music and this song communicated effectively what the artist was trying to say. The sharp play of the guitar coupled with the dissonance of the lyrics and drums create an internal tension in the song that effectively portrays the artists’ concern and feelings.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Blog Entry #5 Lorrie Morgan

I found the Sunday "Except Monday" by Lorrie Morgan when I was a little girl. I grew up being a country fan and this happen to be one of my faovirte songs. However, as I grew up I realized that the song had more meaning instead of just a fun beat. The song is a about a women letting go of a man and she does well all week until Monday when something reminds her of the man. I think it addresses womens rights because it shows that she is walking away from a relationship and standing up for herself. "To show me that your really sincere. That's not much time to change my mind" This line really showed me that she was standing her ground and saything that he needed to earn her and stop taking her for granted. I think this addresses the issue with women that say women stick around for men. Which in some cases is true but I think that this song proves that women do stand up for themselves and they say that they will be treated equally and they will get what is deserved. This song makes me feel like there are women out there that are treated poorly by men, which is sad, but it makes me feel as though there are women that are in same boat as me. Men can be so mean and cruel and sometimes women are viewed as though it was all their fault but some men do not treat their women as great as they should for everything they do. In terms of Lorrie Morgan, I think that she is a great musician and a great women. She has been through a divorce, a public one at that, and she came out on top and is still a triumphing artist!! She has been a favorite of mine for a very long time and was very excited to show her work in this blog!!

Denise Haggerty-Tegan and Sara

Firstly I choose a song called "Proud" by Tegan and Sara. I was first introduced to Tegan and Sara through my girlfriend, they are her favorite band. When I first read about this assignment I knew I was going to write about this song. I had been interested in Tegan and Sara since my girlfriend first introduced me to their music mainly because they send a positive message about powerful women in their music. The song "Proud" is a good example of being a strong women with a voice of your own. This song addresses the issue of femanism with a indie, be yourself and love yourself attitude. I really feel that Tegan and Sara did a good job of presenting a positive role model for young women. The song "Proud" says "take our stand and fight for tomorrow, Finally we got something" I interpret this to mean taking a stand against mainstream America and being proud to stand for equal freedom for everyone regardless of gender, sexual orientation, color or race. This song makes me feel very empowered as a women, it's one of those songs that you want to sing out loud and go out into the world and make a change instead of waiting for someone else to. I believe that this song is saying that by being ourselves and using that to fight to make things equal for everyone, that is how we can change society. I am not sure however that more song's like this would make a difference in mainstream music. It seems like when music gets into the mainstream they lose their message. I really like Tegan and Sara and their message of women power I would be deeply saddened if they lost the meaning in their songs and became duplicable. If I could say something to Tegan and Sara about their music I would just want to say thank you. Thank you for creating something with meaning behind it and with a good message for all people.

Denise Haggerty
WS 200
Blog 5

Tegan and Sara

Freedom and blood
I make my mark and fight for tomorrow
Finally I've got something
Something I can raise my voice for
Fine tell them who you really want
Fine well you'll get yours and I'll get mine
I'm proud to be proud to see
They said proud
I'm proud to be proud to be me
They said tell me oh you've got to tell me
Freedom's rough
So we take our stand and fight for tomorrow
Finally we got something
Something we can bring down the house with
Fine tell them who you think you are
Fine tell them fine is what you are
And when you finally figure out what it is you need
You better think of me
No no no no
When I get up
I feel the rhythm in my fingers
I get up - I hear the rhythm in my laughter
Take a second look
You might find that I am stronger
Take a second look
You might find that you are stronger
Imagination inspiration
It's only fair that I tell you
I plan on leaving here tonight with my pride
It gets me every time
With my pride
I'm proud to be I'm proud to be me

Terri Clark, Blog 5 by Kristen Shannon

Her sister’s sick, she’s gotta baby-sit
Yeah, that sounds like a pretty good excuse

Now you didn’t hear any of this from me
But things aren’t always what they seem
Brace yourself, this may come as a shock to you

Girls lie, too
We don’t care how much money you make
What you drive or what you weigh
Size don’t matter anyway
Girls lie, too
Don’t think you’re the only ones
Who bend and break and stretch it some
We learn from you
Girls lie, too

We can’t wait to hear about your round of golf
We love to see deer heads hanging on the wall
And we like Hooter’s for their hotwings too
Other guys never cross our minds
We don’t wonder what it might be like
How could it be any better than it is with you

Girls lie, too
We don’t care how much money you make
What you drive or what you weigh
Size don’t matter anyway
Girls lie, too
Don’t think you’re the only ones
Who bend and break and stretch it some
We learn from you
Girls lie, too

Yeah, girls lie, too
We always forgive and forget
The cards and flowers you never sent
Will never be brought up again
Girls lie, too
Old gray sweatpants turn us on
We like your friends and we love your mom
And that's the truth
Girls lie, too
Yeah that’s the truth
Girls lie, too

[No, we don’t care how much hair you have
Yeah, that looks good
Comb it over like that

Even before we had this assignment to do I have always loved this song just for humor alone. It has been said throughout history that men are always blowing women off, and lying and making excuses for themselves. This song not only speaks to women but gives men a shot at the truth. Women have become stronger and more stable alone. Today a women is not in need of a man they are completely capable of creating and maintaining happiness for themselves. In this song it allows men to understand that women are just the same at times. That is it possible for women to lie too, to exaggerate the truth to make them feel better, that they are the one and only, and that the little things they do mean the world to them. The music video for this song does not represent the true meaning of the song. I have found this song to be a great anthem for women when having girls night or when angry with their fella'. This is a song to let men and boys beware, now instead of spending your days and nights wondering what you will say to not hurt our feelings you may now take that time and wonder if we have just spared your feelings with an innocent white lie!:)

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Pink "Stupid Girls" - Elena Funk

Pink – Stupid Girls
Stupid girl / Stupid girls / Stupid girl / Maybe if I act like that / That guy will call me back / Porno paparazzi girls / I don’t wanna be a stupid girl / Go to Fred Segal, you’ll find them there / Laughin’ loud so all the little people stare / Lookin’ for a daddy to pay for the champagne / Droppin’ names / What happened to the dream of a girl president? / She’s dancing in the video next to 50 Cent / They travel in packs of two or three / With their itsy bitsy doggies and their teeny weeny tees / Where, oh where, have the smart people gone? / Oh where, oh where could they be? / Chorus: Maybe if I act like that / That guy will call me back / Porno paparazzi girls / I don’t wanna be a stupid girl / Maybe if I act like that / Flippin’ my blonde hair back / Push up my bra like that / I don’t wanna be a stupid girl / The disease is growing, it’s epidemic / I’m scared that there ain’t a cure / The believes it and I’m going crazy / I cannot take anymore!!!!!! / I’m so glad that I’ll never fit in / That will never be me / Outcasts and girls with ambition / That’s what I wanna see! / Disasters all around / A world of despair / Your only concern – will it fuck up my hair??? / Chorus / (Do ya think? Do ya think? Do ya think?) / Pretty will you fuck me girl / Silly I’m so lucky girl / Pull my hair I’ll suck it girl / Stupid girls 2x / Maybe if I act like that / Flippin’ my blonde hair back / Push up my bra like that / Stupid girl / Chorus / Maybe if I act like that / Flippin’ my blonde hair back / Push up my bra like that / Stupid girl.

I was not difficult to find a song to use to discuss feminism. I began listening to the artist Pink many years ago and bought her newest album, I’m Not Dead, during this fall semester. I have always enjoyed her songs proclaiming empowerment for women and issues that many young women face so I chose the song I thought best represented an issue within feminism: body image.

In the music video for “Stupid Girls” Pink does a parody on celebrities Lindsay Lohan, Jessica Simpson, Mary Kate Olsen, and Paris Hilton. However, the music speaks overall about the lack of good role models for young girls. Lyrics such as “what happened to the dream of a girl president” or “where have the smart people gone” are Pink’s cry to young women that there are better things in store for the future than becoming pop icons with an aura of sexuality about them, like being a dancer in “the video next to 50 Cent.” Pink has been quoted saying, “Women have fought so long and hard for our rights and equality, and now all our attention is put on being a size 0", as well as that some women are "living vicariously through these people who seem to shop all day" rather than focusing on real-world issues like war and poverty.

This song directly addresses the issue of “stupid girls” that is too often ignored in society. There is more news coverage now-a-days of a female celebrity’s break-up than there is on lack of funding for the arts or the injustices on women in Nigeria. American media is so obsessed with the things and people that are considered “perfect” that we are forgetting the bigger picture: the future. How are we to build a better future when we do not provide good examples for the new generation?

While I do feel very empowered as a woman through this song, it does not offer a clear-cut method of improving the “stupid” conditions Pink sings about. I do think that she is helping bring awareness to the issue and through that the media at large can take notice and adjust the images it is giving young girls to base their judgments from. Were there more songs like this circulating television and the radio awareness for the issue of body image for young girls would grow, thus improving respect for feminism. Though body image is but one small aspect of feminism I believe Pink has taken a step in the right direction to help shine a positive light on feminism.

Were I to contact Pink I would commend her on her ability to tackle controversial issues within today’s society. Another one of Pink’s songs titled “Dear Mr. President” addresses the war, the homeless, No Child Left Behind, and homophobia. I agree with all the topics she has presented in her songs and the emotion she pours into each is breathtaking. Her musical style has changed a lot since I started listening to her, but I believe she still promotes empowerment among women and uses strong lyrics to help prove her point.

Treat Me Right by Pat Benatar

Pam Fletcher
Blog #5

My older sister purchased this album when it came out in August of 1980 and I would say I knew each song, by heart, by September of 1980. Pat Benatar, at the time, was leading the way for feminism through her music and lyrics. Much of her music revolved around women “not taking it anymore”. This particular song deals with letting her partner know he’d better shape up, or she’s done as she indicates when she says “I’m losing my patience, you’re nearing the end”. She addresses inequality in her verses of “You can’t have it both ways, it’s no way to live, you’ve done all the takin’ it’s your turn to give” and “One of these days you’re gonna reach out and find, the one that you count on has left you behind”. This clearly indicates she is tired of living a patriarchal lifestyle and wants to be treated as an equal. Pat Benatar’s music is typically empowering and strives to point out that women can make the rules: “Do you think I’m a fool, well you better think twice, I’ve had enough baby, it’s time you realize”. I think if there were more music like hers, we would set a different standard for girls, a much better standard than the hip hop stuff out today, which may have a good beat, but very derogatory remarks against women. You can listen to the song in its entirety on the following youtube link: and sing along with the following lyrics:

You want me to leave, you want me to stay
You ask me to come back, you turn and walk away
You wanna be lovers, and you wanna be friends
I'm losing my patience, you're nearing the end
One of these days you're gonna reach out and find
The one that you count on has left you behind
Don't want to be no martyr, with no one, no say
Oh my, my baby, before it's too late

Treat Me Right
Treat Me Right
Open your eyes, maybe you'll see the light

Do you think I'm a fool, well you better think twice
I've had enough baby, it's time you realized
That you can't have it both ways, it's no way to live
You've done all the takin', it's your turn to give

One of these days you're gonna reach out and find
The one that you count on has left you behind
Don't want to be no martyr, with no one, no say
Oh my, my baby, before it's too late

Treat Me Right
Treat Me Right
Open your eye's, maybe you'll see the light
Ooh, Ooh, Treat Me Right

You want me to leave, you want me to stay
You ask me to come back, you're turn and walk away
You wanna be lovers, and you wanna be friends
I'm losing my patience, you're nearing the end

Treat Me Right
Treat Me Right
Open your eyes, maybe you'll see the light
Ooh, Ooh, Treat Me Right

Treat Me Right - Treat Me Right
Treat Me Right - Treat Me Right
Treat Me Right - Treat Me Right
Treat Me Right - Treat Me Right
Treat Me Right (Fading Out)

Written by: Pat Benatar and D. Lubahn Time: 3:24
Performed by Pat Benatar

Original Release Date: August 1980 on Crimes of Passion LP

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Blog #5 by Rebecca Tirabassi

I Am Not My Hair
by India Arie

Release Date: June 27, 2006
Artist: India Arie
Songwriters: India Arie, Andrew Ramsey, Shannon Sanders

Opening with a quick question about India’s hair, a “beat-box” background, and audience laughter, a jazzy Motown sound sets the tone that this going to be a fun song. Even still, India respectfully preaches the distinct message of an awakened feminist who sings, “I am not my hair.” It includes a solo track mixed with a gospel choir effect and lyrics that tell India’s—and every woman’s—story.

I chose this song because I was more familiar with the artist’s name over most other names on our list, though I had never heard of this song. The lyrics to I Am Not My Hair tell a universal story. And as often happens, when music is added to a message, it becomes memorable, repeatable, and even makes you want to dance, or bob your head and shoulders!

I Am Not My Hair is simply relevant—no matter one’s gender or race—as the opening conversation and choruses ring true to every listener:

Is that India.Arie? What happened to her hair? Ha ha ha ha ha
Dat dad a dat da [4x] Dad a ooh

[Verse 1]
Little girl with the press and curl
Age eight I got a Jheri curl
Thirteen I got a relaxer
I was a source of so much laughter
At fifteen when it all broke off
Eighteen and went all natural
February two thousand and two
I went and did
What I had to do
Because it was time to change my life
To become the women that I am inside
Ninety-seven dreadlock all gone
I looked in the mirror
For the first time and saw that HEY....

I am not my hair
I am not this skin
I am not your expectations no no
I am not my hair
I ma not this skin
I am a soul that lives within

At this juncture, India Arie awakens to who she is. . .she is more than her hair! She says what everyone knows, but few act as if they believe! A woman’s hair does not make her less of a friend, or less of a person, or more or less feminine. Neither does a woman’s color (race) define her character or passions or purpose in life. And she closes with a captivating last line in the chorus, “I am a soul that lives within.”

When India moves from self-disclosure to self-discovery, she not only admits she has been living the lie that “you are how you look,” but she is also willing to admit that she must shed the “look” in which she has grown accustom, in order to embrace her true self.

In a brilliant flash of reverse psychology, she tricks those of us who often judge a woman (or any person) by their hair or appearance, reminding us that those who’ve lost their hair due to chemotherapy are NO LESS wonderful, or beautiful, or feminine.

For me, the message in this song is as much about freeing ourselves from judging others by their appearance as it is about freeing ourselves from others’ expectations of us.

As India continues her story, the following verses and chorus of this song thread allegory with empathy, laughter with tears, and pits truth against the lies of culture: a woman, no matter her race or shape, is not her hair!

What'd she do to her hair? I don't know it look crazy
I like it. I might do that.
Umm I wouldn't go that far. I know .. ha ha ha ha

[Verse 2]
Good hair means curls and waves
Bad hair means you look like a slave
At the turn of the century
Its time for us to redefine who we be
You can shave it off
Like a South African beauty
Or get in on lock
Like Bob Marley
You can rock it straight
Like Oprah Winfrey
If its not what's on your head
Its what's underneath and say HEY....


(Whoa, whoa, whoa)
Does the way I wear my hair make me a better person?
(Whoa, whoa, whoa)
Does the way I wear my hair make me a better friend? Oooh
(Whoa, whoa, whoa)
Does the way I wear my hair determine my integrity?
(Whoa, whoa, whoa)
I am expressing my creativity..
(Whoa, whoa, whoa)

[Verse 3]
Breast Cancer and Chemotherapy
Took away her crown and glory
She promised God if she was to survive
She would enjoy everyday of her life ooh
On national television
Her diamond eyes are sparkling
Bald headed like a full moon shining
Singing out to the whole wide world like HEY...

[Chorus 2x]

[Ad lib]
If I wanna shave it close
Or if I wanna rock locks
That don't take a bit away
From the soul that I got
Dat da da dat da [4x]
If I wanna where it braided
All down my back
I don't see what wrong with that
Dat da da dat da [4x]

Is that India.Arie?
Ooh look she cut her hair!
I like that, its kinda PHAT
I don't know if I could do it.
But it looks sharp, it looks nice on her
She got a nice shaped head
She got an apple head
I know right?
It's perfect.

In closing, I particularly appreciated how the artist and song writers didn’t use their platform to denigrate others, but inspired individuals of all colors and hairstyles to dig deeper inside and redefine themselves by who they are not by how they look! They gently and joyously give all women permission to remove any outer “masks” (or hairstyles) that are inauthentic and cumbersome and be set free!

India Arie sets the stage and paves the way for all women to sing--I Am Not My Hair!

Free download: You may need download, which is a free player that allows you to hear this selection for free or listen to a free sample of I am not my hair on/at Itunes Store.)

Monday, December 3, 2007

Blog #3 Gender Ads Jenny Walton

WS 200 Blog#3 Ad Jenny Walton
This is the link you will need to check out the advertisement I selected for this blog:
First of all, I didn’t know what to attack first, the picture or the caption! The old cliche’ “Sex sells” is certainly at work in this advertisement.
First of all, the woman depicted here has no face, only a very curvy, scantily clad body. She is in a state of undress with the pants coming down, hips, sexily swayed and wearing a bra. The lack of a face or identity portrays the thought that women and their bodies are good for only one thing:sex. It does not necessarily say that all women are good for sex, just those who go to the gym . So this depiction is harmful in that it divides women further from each other, in that those who have good bodies are wanted for sex and those whose bodies aren’t represented in the ad are only good or wanted for their mind. For women who consider sex with love and being “wanted”, this could and would be a very depressing ad.
As far as “tired of guys who want you for your mind?”, this is a slam at a pick-up line used by some guys to get sex. And what woman would not want to be liked for who she is, the whole package and not just a warm body?! So, the ad feeds into that by attempting to tell men what they “really” want which is a body to go along with that mind and that it is perfectly acceptable to use women in this manner. This ad furthers the assumption that if you don’t have a mind and a body that is “perfect” that you, as a woman, are not worthy of male attention.
If you already can’t tell, I am really offended by this ad, for myself and women in general. As a mom I have tried to instill in my children that it’s not the outside, but the inside of a person that counts. Everywhere you look there are ads that confuse and distort the image of women that are degrading and downright nasty. It is no wonder that people, young and old alike, are confused by the issue of sex and love and mistake one for the other, making choices that can negatively affect a lifetime! And what about the women who don’t have heredity on their side for a svelte body? This type of ad tells them that they will never be able to be loved for anything except their mind, which in many women’s minds is a lie.
This ad is anti-feminist in that it allows women to be controlled by men and used for their bodies. This allows the patriarchal idea of male domination to continue and encourages women not to use their minds, just their bodies.
A good way to take part in protesting imagery that is harmful to women and girls is to not shop at stores or buy services from industries that advertise in this way. However, if one does that, a letter of explanation as to why you are doing this would be good to put the business on notice. I would also consider educating friends on this issue and get a group organized to boycott buying and do letter writing, phone calls and emails. This campaign could be sent to newspapers as editorials or a door-to door campaign could be done also.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Tracy Chapman "Why" by Andrea Ensley


Why do the babies starve
When there's enough food to feed the world
Why when there're so many of us
Are there people still alone

Why are the missiles called peace keepers
When they're aimed to kill
Why is a woman still not safe
When she's in her home

Love is hate
War is peace
No is yes
And we're all free

But somebody's gonna have to answer
The time is coming soon
Admidst all these questions and contradictions
There're some who seek the truth

Tell me Why do the babies starve
When there's enough food to feed the world
Why when there're so many of us
Are there people still alone

Why are the missiles called peace keepers
When they're aimed to kill
Why is a woman still not safe
When she's in her home

Love is hate
War is peace
No is yes
And we're all free

But somebody's gonna have to answer
The time is coming soon
When the blind remove their blinders
And the speechless speak the truth

Tell me Why do the babies starve
When there's enough food to feed the world
Why when there're so many of us
Are there people still alone

Why are the missiles called peace keepers
When they're aimed to kill
Why is a woman still not safe
When she's in her home

Love is hate
War is peace
No is yes
And we're all free

"Why" is written and sang by Tracy Chapman and on her Debut Album in 1988. I did not know of this artist prior to this assignment nor ever heard of this song. I chose this song just because of its title. After reading the lyrics, I was glad that I chose it. I was also surprised to find out that Tracy was from Cleveland, Ohio.

"Why" addresses many social issues that affect men, women, and children. However, it is more directed to women's rights. For example, "why is a woman still not safe when she's in her home" addresses the ongoing issue of violence against women. Also, this song begins with "why do babies starve when there's enough food to feed the world" which depicts the numerous children in our country who still today do not have enough food to survive. This song directly addresses women's rights and feminist

Violence against women is rarely a topic for most artists. In fact, some artists if you want to call them that, actually write and sing about violating and hurting women. Personally, I feel violence in general is seen so much in our society whether it is via the television, radio, video clips, or in our neighborhoods that people just deal with it without feeling it is a social problem. Violence against women is ignored by more than just mainstream popular culture!

I don't feel this song makes me feel empowered as a woman or human. However, I do feel that Tracy Chapman's lyrics in this song show her passion for change needed. She point blankly addresses the fight for change. She also does it in a manner that does not bash individuals or groups.

I feel feminism as a whole would be more positively understood and respected if it was presented in a positive manner just like Tracy presented "Why". The anger of many feminists has been a turn off to many people, despite what they are fighting for. Being passionate about a social problem does not give someone the right to condemn and judge others. Nonetheless, songs such as this one would greatly increase positive feminism feedback.

I really liked this song but was only able to hear it once. I could not get the video clip back in order to upload it which is very dishearting. This song has a great tempo and style. I do not listen to secular music but I loved Tracy's style, presentation, and powerful lyrics. She has a great voice.


Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Blog #5 A Woman's Worth ~ Alicia Keys By Beverly Ball

Alicia Keys - A Woman's Worth Lyrics

You could buy me diamonds, you could buy me pearls
Take me on a cruise around the world
Baby you know I'm worth it
Dinner lit by candles, run my bubble bath
Make love tenderly to last and last
Baby you know I'm worth it
Wanna please wanna keep wanna treat your woman right
Not just told but to show that you know she is worth your time
You will lose if you choose to refuse to put her first
She will if she can't find a man who knows her worth, mhmn

Cuz a real man knows a real woman when he sees her
And a real woman knows a real man ain't afraid to please her
And a real woman knows a real man always comes first
And a real man just can't deny a woman's worth

If you treat me fairly I'll give you all my goods
Treat you like a real woman should
Baby I know you're worth it
If you never play me, promise not to bluff
I'll hold you down when shit gets rough
Baby I know you're worth it
She rolls the mile makes you smile all the while being true
Don't take for granted the passion that she has for you
You will lose if you choose to refuse to put her first
She will if she can't find a man who knows her worth, oh

Cuz a real man knows a real woman when he sees her
And a real woman knows a real man ain't afraid to please her
And a real woman knows a real man always comes first
And a real man just can't deny a woman's worth

No need to read between the lines, spell it out for you
Just hear this song cuz you can't go wrong when you value
A woman, woman, woman, a woman's worth

Cuz a real man knows a real woman when he sees her
And a real woman knows a real man ain't afraid to please her
And a real woman knows a real man always comes first
And a real man just can't deny a woman's worth

Cuz a real man knows a real woman when he sees her
And a real woman knows a real man ain't afraid to please her
And a real woman knows a real man always comes first
And a real man just can't deny a woman's worth

Mhmn mhmn mhmn mhmn mhmn mhmn….

"Alicia Keys: Beauty’s Only Skin Deep"

"Keys emerges as the latest “Black feminist” that relies on constructing her own musical agenda and beauty absent of her highly publicized youth and music industry guidance from label executives".

"Linda Seida says that “wisdom and experience transcends Alicia Keys’ youth” (All Music Guide, 2006). Perhaps this relates to Keys’ multi racial immersion into musical training and interests. The daughter of a White mother and African American father, Keys was born Alicia Augello Cook on January 25, 1981 in the rough “Hell’s Kitchen” section of Manhattan, New York (Denziel, 2003; Samuels, 2001). As a child, Keys is recognized as a musical prodigy with extensive training in ballet, classical piano, and voice. Keys is intrigued by diverse musical tastes that includes Prince, Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, Mary J. Blige, Chopin, Beethoven, and the Notorious B.I.G. Keys’ interest in music allows her to find inspiration in various artists rather than one specific genre of music.
Keys manages to incorporate numerous influences to create “Black feminism” that allows her youth to determine her musical abilities.

Keys’ education further drives her musical talents and objectives. At age 14, Keys begins to write songs and compose her own music. Keys enrolls into the Professional Performing Arts School in Manhattan only to graduate as the valedictorian at age 16 (Denziel, 2003; Seida, 2006). Keys briefly enters Columbia University but leaves to pursue her career in music. Keys lands a recording deal with Columbia Records but is confronted with pressure and reservations from the label to allow a young prodigy to take control of her debut project. Keys exemplifies taking a stance against powerful music hierarchies to define her potential and credibility to produce music of substance and focus.

Keys embodies “Black feminism” for her ability to stand up against a recording industry hierarchy to encourage her own vision to define her talent. The record label attempts to market her and construct an image that she does not want. Columbia Records supports Keys to become a conventional pop vocalist with sequined gowns, exposed cleavage, and high heels. The label even encourages Keys to abandon her piano and intentions to become a songwriter and producer. Keys says the label wants to mold her into another “Mariah or Whitney” clone (Samuels, 2001). This resistance from Keys symbolizes what Audre Lorde says is a “a refusal to be delineated by male establishment modes of femininity” (Tate, 1983). Keys leaves Columbia Records because of what bell hooks describes as “courageously claiming a right to personal integrity and refusal to don a false sense of self for anyone” (2001). Keys contends that she wants to be assertive in constructing her own intentions and motive in the music business outside of sex and being attractive to the male gaze".

Keys states,“People are into looks, but I don’t have to play into that. I’m not about showcasing myself like that. I’m not wearing booty shorts, low cut blouses, or see-through dresses for anybody. The music’s all I’m selling” (Samuels, 2003)".

“Black feminism” is displayed in part to Keys’ demanding self-esteem and willingness to define her own image based on her musical abilities".

Keys displays a music first work ethic over glamour and beauty. “Keys is not an artist that can be pigeonholed, so people expect her to create new paths rather than trying to fit into today’s scene. She is the ultimate artist – she writes, produces, performs, and arranges” (Hall, 2003)".

This song examines a woman's worth within the sphere of the public and private domains of black femininity especially in the context of of life in the ghetto. In the "you tube" video I have attached it opens with Keys walking across a ghetto street. The video tries to show the connection of her previous video "Fallin" in which she laments for falling for the wrong men. In "A Woman's Worth" she tried to detail his struggles in finding work. The song and video focus on the choices made by some women forced to work the streets. This song also depicts that these women make this choice with full knowledge of the social implications. She shows how these women have a sense of empowerment and dignity in our world today that for black women offer few substantive choices for economic empowerment. Their only other choices would be marriage, menial labor or low paying jobs as nurturers. Alicia Keys refers to these women as "proud walkin' women.
I do not think this song offers reliable choices for black women in general and certainly nothing to overcome sexist oppression. I think this song does address the choices and effects of women working the streets to survive and attain some economic freedom and allows us a chance to see street women and their profession in a different maybe even more acceptable light for gaining possible financial freedom.

http://national black graduate student association

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Blog #4 Girl Interrupted, Tyler Van Drei

Girl Interrupted was a movie about a female who was forced to spend time in a private mental institution. The psychiatrist she seen considered taking aspirin and drinking alcohol as a suicide attempt and decided Susanna needed to spend time there. The storyline follows Susanna and all the people she meets at Claymoore. She meets people with many different disorders and problems, from family abuse to sociopaths and even pathological liars. Throughout the film Susanna becomes more comfortable with her institutionalized female friends and that begins to make her family nervous who are on the outside looking in. Eventually, after an 18 month stay at the institution, Susanna returns home and has a better knowledge of herself.

Girl Interrupted deals, almost exclusively, with women. Obviously in this film women are not being represented at their best. The main women in the film have mental disorders so it doesn’t really show them being empowered either. The women are represented as being mentally ill, since they are in a hospital and cannot control whether or not they leave it hurts the image of women. Suicides, pathological liars, and abused women are the types of people that are associated with the film. I would not consider Girl Interrupted a feminist film at all. The movie does represent women almost exclusively, but they are not represented in a positive or negative fashion.

I really enjoyed the film. The way that the writers incorporated all different kinds of illnesses into all the different women’s personalities was very interesting to watch. The women played their roles very well, it was very believable the way they acted out their illnesses and sicknesses. The storyline also played out well, throughout Susanna’s experience of finding herself and making friends in a place where she never thought either of those things could happen. Seeing as how the film played out in a mental institution and that is was primarily all women the movie doesn’t really relate to my personal experiences at all.

Some Sources I used:

Friday, November 16, 2007

Mona Lisa Smile- Casey Page

The movie Mona Lisa Smile who stars Julia Roberts who plays a teacher named Kathern Watson (Julia Roberts)who comes to Wellesley College in 1953. She is a teacher who has very different beliefs then what her fellow colleagues belive in. Keep in mind that Wellesley College is an all female college. She took a position that was teaching Art History but in the end that is not what she wanted to teach these girls.

In the 1950's the dream for any girl was to get married and be the housewive and have kids and not have a career of their own. This is exactly what the girls at Wellesley College wanted to do. However, Katherine was wanting to change this outlook in her girls lives and wanting them to go to college and have their own career and not just be this housewife. Her students consisted of Betty Warren (Kirsten Dunst), Joan Brandwyn (Julia Stiles), Giselle Levy (Maggie Gyllenhaal), Connie Baker (Ginnifer Goodwin).

Betty was a very outspoken student who made her voice be heard about marriage was the only way to live her life after getting her college education. She does end up getting married, however from the beginning her marriage isn't good. On the other hand Joan is the pre-law student and is thinking about going to Law School, but she rather get married after she graduates. Katherine helps her in the application process to law school and she ends up getting in. Joan decides not to go to law school and gets married instead. Of course Katherine isn't happy by these decisions going on with the girls in her class. She wants her students to see more to life than being housewives, becuase of her outspoken beliefs she is warned about losing her job if she continues.

When it comes to gender, this film shows that males were very superior and were able to have the careers and do what they wanted with their lives. The females had to get married either before college or during college and then not have a career and just be a housewife. The women portrayed in this film had no say in how they wanted their life to go. When Betty discusses the idea of getting a divorce it was like the biggest problem and her mother did everything she possibly could do to tell her no. This film can be empowering representation of females because Katherine tried getting the girls to believe there is more to life than being a housewife.

I do consider this film to be a "feminist" film because its about fighting for the rights of the females against males. It shows the hard work of females in this movement. This film shows how far we have in today's world with females. If it wasn't for women like Katherine Watson in the movie, maybe just maybe the females would still be expected to be the housewife and not have a career.

I personally love this movie, one because it has some of my favorite actresses and two because it shows a movement that has been going on for decades. As I said before it shows how far we have come today. I cannot relate to their experiences because I want to have a career and kids at the same time. I would recommend this movie to anybody because it shows the reality of how the times have changed.

Blog #3: Baby Boom

Baby Boom is a movie that is shows Diann Keaton having to take over being a mother to her sisters baby. Diann Keaton lives in NYC and had no intentions of having children, so when she was given this baby she had no idea what to do with it. She had to go through many changes in her life to make sure that the baby was taken care of. She had to interview babysitters, take time off work which made her work struggle, she lost her boyfriend and her social life did a 180.
Then she came to a realization that the city was not the place for a baby to grow up so she moved to the country where she had to learn to do a lot more for herself than she was used to doing in the city. She ended up loving her niece and starting a baby applesauce business. The business took off and she became very successful and happy with her new life.
This film has to do with gender issues because it is assumed that women are suppose to take care of children. Her boyfriend wanted nothing to do with the baby so he left. It also addresses the issue when it came to Diann Keaton having to do more things around her house in the country. Most of the things that she had to do were things that men were titled has having to be their jobs. So when she accomplished something it was a big deal. I think that the film empowers women because it shows Diann Keaton as both a working successful women in the city and then also as a "mom" that loves and makes sacrafices for her child!
I would say this film is a feminist film in a postive way because it portrays a women accomplshing so much on her own. She raised the baby and supported herself and the baby. Along the way she learned a lot and accomplished a lot.
I am actaully a big fan of this movie. I used to like the movie when I was younger so when I saw it on the list I was so excited to go rent the movie and watch it again. I think that it is a great movie to show young girls that anything can be done no matter what situation you are in.
The movie "Judy Berlin" is something you could watch to hear a reference to the movie. Also if you google baby boom you can read most about the cast from different references.

Mean Girls by Pam Fletcher

Mean Girls is a 2004 “teen movie” directed by Mark Waters. The premise of the movie is based around 15 year old Cady Heron, played by Lindsay Lohan, attending public school for the first time in her life after moving with her family to Chicago from Africa where she was home schooled. This movie comically deals with the trials and tribulations of being a teen girl looking for acceptance. First, Cady is befriended by two of the unpopular group: Damian-self proclaimed homosexual, and Janice-public proclaimed (falsely) homosexual. The fun (or drama) begins when the three of them plot together to take down “The Plastics”, the 3 most popular, nasty yet fashionable A-listers in the school, led by Regina George, the nastiest of all. The movie is accurately rated PG13 as it would not be appropriate for under the age of 13 due to sexual content, language and teen partying.

Although this film is marketed as a comedy, and at times is “over the top”, it truly is a pretty accurate dramatic portrayal of high school life, just to the extreme. The girls in this movie are presented as very shallow, conceited, fake or dumb. I would say that this movie actually sets feminism back a couple of generations, but I think the intent was actually to make fun of the stereotypical girl “teen scene”.

I did happen to enjoy Mean Girls. It was reminiscent of high school; the good, the bad and the ridiculous. Cady changed her personality to match who her friends were at the time. It was amazing to watch the transformation of innocence to nasty. So, it was entertaining because it made fun of true to life events and how absurd high school drama can be.

For more information on the movie “Mean Girls” you may visit the following sites: (movie trailer available)

A League of Their Own~ Jacqui Duthie

The synopsis of this film I retrieved from The Internet Movie Database. “In the farm of Oregon Dottie Henson and Kit Keller are working on the farm. Sisters that do love each other, except when it comes to baseball. Kit wants to play in the league but is upset to hear that it is Dottie who is chosen to play for the AAPGL. (All American Pro Girls League) Dottie refuses to play unless Kit can come along. AAPGL was only made because of the World War II and all of the man were in the war. Along the way to the stadium they meet Marla Hooch who is a great hitter, but to most people not the prettiest girl. When they are going to try out they meet Doris and Mae because Doris threw a baseball at Dottie who caught it impressing Doris. They girls find out their new manager is Jimmy Dugan. Jimmy Dugan drinks a lot and is the worst manager until Dottie get through to him and he becomes a better person. Miss Cuthbert makes sure the rules are followed, no boys, no drinking or smoking until Mae poisons her meal. The girls go to party and Marla who had been overlooked a lot is noticed by a guy named Nelson. Dottie's husband Bob is in the army and when news comes that a man in the army has been killed it turns out to be Betty Spaghetti. After awhile, Kit feels that once again like at home she is behind Dottie's shadow. Dottie notices it to and asks to be transferred to another team. Of course Mr. Lovitz doesn't want the best player to be transferred so he has Kit transferred to Racine. Kit feels that Dottie did this on purpose. Kit plays for the Racine while Dottie plays for Rockford. In the final scene Dottie is crashed into by Kit and she drops the ball, letting Racine win, making Kit have her own stardom instead of being in Dottie's shadow. The girls have a reunion and they remember the fun they had together.”

The message this movie was that women can do what men can do, play baseball. The women in this movie are amazing baseball players; however, it takes a while for the men who are coming to these games to realize that. Also, since these women were not proper women. The owner of the team sent them to a school that teaches the women the how to act and behave like women. This part of the movie was somewhat upsetting because these women were baseball players and the men were trying to make them behave womanly. There is a quote in the movie that Tom Hanks says “There's no crying! There's no crying in baseball.” Tom Hanks says this because one woman made a mistake in the field and Tom Hanks starts yelling at her, she begins to cry. This point in the movie make women look weak but in the end, these women are strong.
The movie represented these girls as being strong women. They were able to deal with what was even thrown at them. They were strong when a woman received a letter that her husband has died in the war and the banded together to make the team stronger.
I do not know if this movie is a feminist movie. These women came together to play a game they loved. However, the men did treat them differently. The man who ran the league wanted these women to wear skirts instead of pant and the men only come to look at the women and not to watch the game. The men did not care who won or lost.
These women did start making the game more interesting to watch. However, they did use their bodies and their womanly ways to make the game interesting. They would catch fly balls with their hats and do the splits when catching a ball.
We can say this movie was a feminist movie. This movie involved women who participated in a movement that supported women doing what liked to do. Since this movie was set during World War II, women were going back to work and one thing was women were playing sports.
My personal opinion of this movie is that it is a great movie. When ever this movie is on television, I end up watching the whole movie. I am a baseball fan and I played softball when I was younger. When this movie first came out, I remember saying that I was going to be the first girl to go into the major leagues. I believe this movie inspire women to go for their dreams, even if their dreams are male dominated. This movie is a must see.


Denise Haggerty- The Hours

The film that I choose is called The Hours (2002). This film was about three women and the struggles that they face, each woman is from a different period of time and the film really shows how even though things have changed for women they still face some of the same struggles. The first women introduced is Virginia Woolf, she is writing a novel in 1923 called “Mrs. Dalloway”. Virginia is depressed and struggling with her sexuality, she feels attracted to women however she is married. Her struggle comes to be a decision whether to run away or return to her husband who loves her. The second women is Laura Brown, she is a housewife in 1951 who is trying to plan a perfect birthday party for her husband. Laura has a son and is reading the book “Mrs. Dalloway” she feels depressed and tired of her life. She is struggling to discover herself and trying to be a good housewife and mother. Her struggle is almost exactly the same as Virginia Woolf’s in that she is trying to decide whether she will run away or stay with her husband who she is miserable with. The third woman is Clarrisa Vaughan and she is a successful woman in 2001. She is planning a party for her friend Richard, who always calls her Mrs. Dalloway and also who is dying. Clarrisa is struggling with her sexuality, she is a lesbian however she is feeling attracted to Richard who is dying. All three women have to face struggles in their life and whether or not they are going to make a change in their lives.
This film showed women as strong and powerful it showed that one woman in 1923 who is struggling in a male dominated world can affect the lives of women decades later. This film showed that women can make a very powerful change in the world. I feel that this film would be a good feminist movie because it shows women as independent smart people who although some moments of the movie show the role that men have over women, it showed that women are very strong. I personally really enjoyed this film. I think I identified with all the women I remember in high school feeling trapped like I wanted to run away like most of the women in this movie. Also I remember when I was discovering my own sexuality, that is something that can be very difficult for someone and I remember being very confused the same as the women in this movie.

This is a video that I found on that I thought was really cool. There are also additional links for further information on the film The Hours.

Yahoo movies:

G.I. Jane-Mitch Bruss

G.I. Jane is a movie about Lieutenant Jordan O'Neil (played by Demi Moore). She is attempting to make it into a highly competeive, dangerous, and notious Special Operations training. The participants of this program are almost always men who are hand selected by high ranking government officials. Moreover, once Lieutenant Jordan O’Neil is selected for the program she faces many hardships including sexism, physical drawbacks, and even horse-trading by the high ranking government official that selected her.
The film deals with issues of gender by questioning whether certain facets of the military are gender neutral. Moreover, women are presented as a struggling group that are trying to find their place in a male centered society. I also feel that women are protrayed as a strong, empowered, and presistent group of people who, even though against great odds, still demand to be treated with the same equality as men, even in extreme circumstances such as SEAL training.
Lastly, I would most definantly consider this a feminist film. One reason I say this is because one of the producers and actors , Demi Moore, have stated repeatidly how the goal of this film was to call into question how women are treated in sexist situation and to call attention to how feminism needs to reach all women regardless of profession. My personal opinion of this film is that it had a potetnially good story to tell, but was ruined by a trite, predictable plot and overplayed and melodramtic acting that was extremely waterdown and unrealistic. - 48k - 27k

The Joy Luk club by Ian Moy

The joy luck club is a book that was written and published in 1989 by amy Tan. Later in 1993 the book was made into a motion picture. The Joy luck Club tells the story of four chinese women who immigrated to america and they raise their 4 daughters as american and chinese entities. The four mothers Suayan, An Mei, Lindo Jong, and ying Ying. These four women all hold different traits in the movie because they stress the chinese calender symbols for their character. For example Ying ying was born during the year of the tiger while Waverly an mei's daughter was born during the year of the horse and exhibiting its matching traits. The four daguthers are June, Waverly Jong, Rose, and Lena. The joy luck club itself is actually a womens club founded in China but was resurrected in San francisco, where the mothers play mahjong, as the movie opens June's mother Sueyan passes and June is asked to take her place in the joy luck club. It was my understanding from the movie that June was always thought higher then the other girls because she was more thoughtful in her approach to her respect for their chinese culture. While Waverly is living with an caucasioan boyfriend and has a child from a previous relationship, in chinese culture those aspects are looked down upon. Overall the main plot behind the story is seeing all the sacrifices and hardships that these imigrant chinese women persevered through world war two and the invasion of China by the Japanese. Their lives under the tytrannical systems of female oppression in china, where they often and commonly practice the one child policy. Mainly keeping their first son and disregarding daughters because they were viewed as a hindrance on the house. You can see this first hand in the movie whereLindo is married to a young man and his evil mother demands a grandson, she is almost in a forced state of slavery to produce progeny for a family not of her own. I feel the biggest sotry in this movie was that of Sueyan and her daughter June. June's ascension is paramount in setting up the climax of June finding her lost sisters (twins) whom her mother had been searching for up until the time of her death. But in many cases June feel uncapable of fullfilling her mothers wishes.

One Major knock on women is how thy are percieved in Chinese culture, they are treated as second class in many cases, especially if they are the second daughter or not the oldest child in the family. In one case Lena who is married to a caucasioan man, they are partners in a business because he believes in equality, but he gets paid more in their partnership, how does that work? Another knock on the women in this story is that in many cases the daughters don't respect or realize thei ntentions of their mothers. The mothers realized what they escaped the systems of oppression in china by coming to america. they did not escape that for their children to be sucked into it again, they realize that thei rdaughters are only being pushed into the american system of female oppression. I think that by the end of the film it is very empowering when all the wdaughters in the film fina ahealthy balance between their Chinese train of thought and their American way of life, and they realize what all they have overcame. I think in some respect you could consider this an feminist film because tese women were raised in a arena none of us could imagine, all of their trials and hardships are not blown out of proportion, they then come to america and realize their daughters are in the same position. But the daughters find their peace by getting past the fear and the feeling of being trapped behind a masquerade whter it be a failed marriage you're holding onto, or doing something just to make someone happy even though you know it to be wrong. They finally overcome the roadblocked by the 8 ball and find their healthy balance.

I thought that this movie was reallly good. I actualy have seen it before many years ago, I am 50 % chinese so this movie definitely strikes home, much of my family was slaughtered during world war 2 by the Japanese invading China. besides this also, i have overheard my father tell stories of many children especially little girls would often get left on the beaces of the rivers and set afloat becausse they were just deemed unneccessary by the family It is very sad, but also i kindo f get offended reading what people who have no idea what chinese culture is all about hav to say. In one case i read a post onlin that said " the chinese depictions in this movie were totally steroetypical. Well if this ignorant person would have read their history books or even viewed a chinese society, they will see that more often than not these stereotypes are true.

If you wanna check out more info on The Joy Luck Club see

Heather Holley Blog #4

Stepford Wives is a story of stereotypes and control. Joanna a big shot woman from Manhattan along with husband Walter and their two children. Walter has always been beneath his wife in terms of money making, control and attitude. Walter has seemed to be the underdog in their relationship, while Joanna has on top of her game making their relationship distant. Well, after Joanna is fired from her job the quant little family moves to a little town in Connecticut called Stepford. Here in Stepford the women are blonde, tall, thin and sexy, which makes Joanna’s dark drab and short dark hair quite noticeable. Joanna soon befriends a writer named Bobbie and a man named Roger. Bobbie like Joanna is a mess, she lives in a pigsty while Roger embodies the flamboyant part of a gay couple. The male counterpart in each of these relationships wants there partner to be different, to be acceptable to say the least. Joanna’s husband wants her to be more like the women in Stepford, warm and loving and far away from the black numbers she always wears. Bobbies husbands wants her to be the perfect homemaker, a cleaner, a baker, a slave to every dying wish that he may have. Rogers partner wants him to less “froo-frooy” and more “manly”. Well, after time we see a change in each of the characters, first Roger becomes a politician and does a 180 from his previous self, while Bobbie becomes a blonde home wife with the cleanest house. Joanna decides she wants to leave Stepford because she does not want to be like these women, soon after discovering that all the women in Stepford used to be big shots, owners of airlines, or banks. After her encounter with Bobbie she calls the child center to let them know she is picking up her children, when they inform her that their father has already picked them up. She rushes to the “Men’s Club” where it is revealed to her that the men of Stepford had their wives programmed to be the “perfect wife”. Why? Because they were tired of being the underdogs, the lesser part of the relationship. Walter then takes his wife to be transformed. Soon after at a part, Walter goes into the secret room and destroys all the chips in each of the wive’s heads. To make a long story short, it ends up that Mike, the head honcho was really a robot and his wife was the one who created the society and the robots. It is also revealed that she used to be a big timer herself, in the medical field. But she caught her husband cheating and killed him and his mistress and creating a robot to take his place. She wanted to create the society because she wanted the old time chivalry, where men were men and women were women.
I think that this film was perfect to show the ideas that many hold on what a woman is or the ideal woman rather. Blonde, tall, thin and submissive. It shows that they shouldn’t be the ones bringing home the bacon but rather the man should. But when we discover who the women really used to be it showed that women were taking control, that they had found a way to be better than the men in their household. Big shot women owners of companies, inventors, doctors. I think that in that regard it showed women beautifully, but to counteract that I must say that to say that big shot women are dark ladies who neglect their families and personal lives is a bit much.
I think, which I know that my definition of feminism differs greatly from “true feminist”, that this was a feminist film. It showed that men have this ideal that they are to be the better partner, the big shot, the money maker. That they are the ones who should be tied up in work and too busy to be a family man. The film implies that there is an ideal to what women should be, and what they shouldn’t.
I like this film, it is funny and down to earth with a true meaning behind it. We can see how society that we live in places these “bars” on women, what they should be what they should do. And it shows that there are men out there who appreciate that and don’t want just another pretty face.

WS 200 Blog #4 Jenny Walton

WS 200
Blog #4: Fried Green Tomatoes
Jenny Walton

The film Fried Green Tomatoes is a story about friendships between many people, which flashes back and forth from the 1980’s to the 1920-30 era. This begins with Evelyn Couch, a woman who is in her forties, going through her “change” and she is very dissatisfied with how her life has turned out. The storyteller is 82 year old Ninny Threadgoode. Evelyn is a regular visitor to the nursing home Ninny lives in and through these visits, Ninny tells of exploits of friends from her childhood in old Southern Alabama, Depression era. This story probes relationships between families, women, murder, racism and hints at lesbianism.
In the film, flashbacks to the Depression era reflect on women as the caretakers, mostly all wearing dresses, except for Idgie, a young girl who prefers to wear ties and pants from a very young age. She idolizes her big brother Buddy, who is accidentally killed by a train very early in the movie. After her brothers death, Idgie befriend his fiancée, Ruth. Together they buy a café named Whistle Stop. Throughout this story that moves back and forth, women are definitely portrayed as the weaker sex as Evelyn is struggling with the fact that she feels useless to her husband, now that their child is gone from the nest. Her sole duty in life has been to care for home and hearth and her husband only is interested in what he wants, to watch sports and eat. Her outlook on life, as she sees herself is “too old to be young, too young to be old”. Through the series of visits that Evelyn makes to the nursing home and hearing Ninny tell her stories, Evelyn finds the power inside herself to lose weight and take charge of her own life, becoming more independent. Idgie was definitely a feminist ahead of her time in that she wore pants, kept her hair very short and spoke her mind. She worked as a hard as a man in the story and was fiercely independent. She also appeared to have a crush on Ruth that deepened into a true love for her. Ruth was a southern belle, complete with a dainty walk and speech pattern, but Idgie and her independent spirit influence Ruth away from that genre .Ruth is shown in the film to be weak, in that she marries an abusive husband who typifies a southern male as being “one of the boys”. Idgie ultimately kills him to protect Ruth who is also pregnant at the time. Ruth and Idgie raise the baby together, naming him after Idgie’s dead brother, Buddy. Throughout the story, Ruth and Idgie don’t conform to society especially by befriending Negroes and feeding them out of the back of the café. Ruth leaving her husband and raising their son without a father was also not accepted in that era. These and other occurrences in the story serve as a springboard for Evelyn to finally find a job and speak up to her husband, giving this film a feminist flair. Evelyn dumps the oppressed Southern – midlife-wife persona and emerges loving herself and who she is. Ruth and Idgie were ahead of their time by living together and persevering through many difficulties, resulting in a deep love and respect for each other.
I liked this film because even though it is fictional, it empowers anyone, gay or straight, to not conform to society’s standards. As a middle-aged woman, I can relate to Evelyn. I was raised to believe that my sole existence was to please my husband and that it should be enough. I have found this to not be true at all and believe that this myth is perpetuated by well-meaning mothers who were also raised that way. This practice actually stunts the growth of women and, if not balanced by the other partner, simply does nothing to solidify a relationship. Being a door mat is no fun and Ruth and Idgie’s relationship was one of love and respect for each other, regardless of what anyone said or did. This applies to all relationships, straight or gay.
Fannie Flagg. Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistlestop Café. New York, Toronto: Random House/Ballantine Books,1987.