Interrogating Postfeminism: Gender and the Politics of Popular Culture
Yvonne Tasker, Diane Negra
Duke University Press, 2007 M11 2 - 344 pages
This timely collection brings feminist critique to bear on contemporary postfeminist mass media culture, analyzing phenomena ranging from action films featuring violent heroines to the “girling” of aging women in productions such as the movie Something’s Gotta Give and the British television series 10 Years Younger. Broadly defined, “postfeminism” encompasses a set of assumptions that feminism has accomplished its goals and is now a thing of the past. It presumes that women are unsatisfied with their (taken for granted) legal and social equality and can find fulfillment only through practices of transformation and empowerment. Postfeminism is defined by class, age, and racial exclusions; it is youth-obsessed and white and middle-class by default. Anchored in consumption as a strategy and leisure as a site for the production of the self, postfeminist mass media assumes that the pleasures and lifestyles with which it is associated are somehow universally shared and, perhaps more significantly, universally accessible.
Essays by feminist film, media, and literature scholars based in the United States and United Kingdom provide an array of perspectives on the social and political implications of postfeminism. Examining magazines, mainstream and independent cinema, popular music, and broadcast genres from primetime drama to reality television, contributors consider how postfeminism informs self-fashioning through makeovers and cosmetic surgery, the “metrosexual” male, the “black chick flick,” and more. Interrogating Postfeminism demonstrates not only the viability of, but also the necessity for, a powerful feminist critique of contemporary popular culture.
Contributors. Sarah Banet-Weiser, Steven Cohan, Lisa Coulthard, Anna Feigenbaum, Suzanne Leonard, Angela McRobbie, Diane Negra, Sarah Projansky, Martin Roberts, Hannah E. Sanders, Kimberly Springer, Yvonne Tasker, Sadie Wearing
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... magical heritage as " chosen ones , " take up the baton of their foremothers in order to fight evil , protect " innocents , " and further the powers of good . As such , they gain magical powers and knowledge that mark them as differ ...
... magical bonding between women dis- played in Charmed acts as a politicized point of identification for contempo- rary teen girl audiences . The explicit feminist politics within each of these earlier cultural movements is renegotiated ...
... magical powers to harm another . The camera cuts to their magic book , the Book of Shadows ; the cover changes , initiating the witches ' loss of power . The only way to restore their powers , as Leo states , is " to try and restore ...
The Magic of Postfeminist
Adultery Boredom and the Working Girl
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