In the Blog

Britney Spears is a Feminist Issue

October 23rd, 2007     by Stacey May Fowles     Comments

Cortney at A Feminist Response to Pop Culture wonders “why the feminist bloggers that I read are not writing more about Britney Spears?” and I have to agree with her.

Thea has previously touched on the demise of Spears’ popularity as a feminist issue, but now that Britney’s bad VMA performance has been eclipsed by the loss of her children, I agree with Cortney when she says the need for some feminist blogging on the subject is nigh. She reports:

A few days ago one of my very close feminist friends informed me that Britney Spears had lost custody of her children and what a good thing that is. It was more than a bit disconcerting to hear someone for whom I have a great deal of respect so openly revel in the pain and suffering of a woman who lost her children.

News broke today that Britney has regained her full parental rights, but I think it might be time to reflect of whether or not the feminist community has a responsibility to support, defend, critique or ignore the constant flurry of news that is “the Britney Spears.” Is our analysis of her iconic downfall merely adding fuel to media frenzy, or can it pull some positive insight about women in the media gaze out of an otherwise destructive machine?

Cortney gives us a great starting point:

…I think that her body politic is extraordinarily problematic especially since she is simultaneously marketed to young girls as an idol and to men as a masturbatory fantasy. But note how I write that “she is marketed” as if she is no longer an independent entity but a piece of public property. Not long ago one of my friends and I got into a debate about whether Spears’ chose this life path. My friend argued that she deserves what is happening to her because she chose to become a part of the public domain. But remember, she was but a child when she made that choice and she hardly could have anticipated the hyper-sexualization and invasion that would come along with that “choice.” Further, does anyone really deserve that kind of dehumanization?

Tags: in my opinion..., playlist

« “You know, I gotta lotta Lesbian friends.”*

Geri Halliwell calls feminism “bra-burning lesbianism.” »