Saturday, March 29, 2008

Ashley Dupre: Not quite a neo-feminist

I've been meaning to talk about this for awhile, but the articles have been safely tucked away in my bookmarks folder as my fervor for discussing the issue at hand waned. But after my daily Do 50 Crunches and Look at My Body In the Mirror Before Showering and Hate Myself But then Realize I Can Blame That Disdain Wholly on the Media session, I'm ready to talk about the Titocracy.

Elizabeth Wurtzel
, heroine, fellow depressive, writer of my life story, penned an article last week for the L.A. Times lamenting the fact that even though a woman is running for president and magical vaginas abound, women today are still left to reconcile between the Madonna and the Whore.

Because it's true; even the brand of neo-feminism I champion has little to do with taking off your top for horny men sweating tequila. Where is the power in that? You're playing into exactly what they want from you, and depending on how many shots you chugged prior, you're probably not even making your own decisions.

If women truly do need to toe this imaginary line between the Madonna and the Whore, how is letting Girls Gone Wild film you making out with your sluttiest friend not just plain whorish?

We're squandering away what little power our breasts and our blowjobs bestow upon us. A neo-feminist wouldn't flash the camera and claim that's empowerment; she would, instead, flirt fearlessly with Joe Francis himself into getting her a PR or media contract. No nipples splayed across camera, no drunken finger banging sessions; just the knowledge that, like the Madonna, our body is our temple, and like the Whore, that body totally gets guys hard.

Because there's a difference between empowerment and being a drunken slut. Using your body as a tool to gain power requires that you're conscious of it; it doesn't mean flashing someone and then claiming afterwards that it was oh so feminist of you.

There's a kind of self-awareness that comes with female empowerment, a self-awareness that so many girls today lack. And whether that stems from the media or the deeply engraved inferiority complexes most women seem to possess is something not even my girl Wurtzel can figure out.


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