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September 14, 2006

Comments

Laura

Reading this entry saddens me. It seems that women today are happy reversing the quest for equal rights/respect by playing into societies desire(s) to make us merely sex objects.

I feel by continuing this trend we (as a whole) are making a mockery of our sex. I am not intending to say that being sexy means you are weak, but portraying that as "what you have to offer" falls quite flat.

Thanks for the post!
-Laura

Ed

And you guys get color?! Oh, the indignity of it all.

I don't think the Heuristic Squelch at Cal (was this around when you were there, Hugo?) or the Daily Nexus at UCSB have ever stooped this low. They have come close on many an occasion, but never this low. This, on the other hand, is rather disturbing.

Troy

Gross! That is nasty coming from a school paper! I wonder, is it funded by the school? If so doesn't it violate some school policy? I will send an email.

Mermade

I was gonna post a blog on this! GRRR! But yes, I intend on emailing the oh-so-classy editor in chief regarding my thoughts on this, um, section of our newspaper. The least they could do is publish a guy version of "eye candy" if they intend to continue on printing this degrading piece.

I think read the PCC newspaper just to get angry now. I am almost sure of it.

Kris

How about we have a professors' "eye candy"? You could be there, and Derek Milne your collegue. Shirts off, please. Yumm.

Anna

I think what supprises me most is the assumption that the readers are all (or at least mostly) male. I have no trouble imagining a New Zealand student magasine doing something this crass but I have real trouble believing that they wouldn't include an eyecandy guy as well.

Bach-us

I have nothing but contempt for anyone who supports the quest to make all women appear available for sexual assessment. If male students are included, I have nothing but contempt for those who think the answer to sexism is to treat everyone equally disrespectfully.

Does Fabiola know that her namesake is the patron saint of divorced people, difficult marriages, etc.?

Amanda Marcotte

The emphasis on cooking, I'll admit, is cracking me up. I don't doubt there's a lot of young men out there who are still under the impression that they'll never touch the stove again after marriage, but still. It's so very 50s. I expect they'll next have an assessment of her gums to determine her health.

Mermade

Did I type, "post a blog?" BAH! Oops.

I understand what Bach-us is saying. We shouldn't have any sort of "eye candy" in a newspaper. Still, I have to wonder if people would react differently if only guys were featured as opposed to girls.

PCC's newspaper is a piece of trash. Plain and simple. I would even go so far as to call the editor, Don Martirez, evil. He is using a powerful paper - a paper that thousands of people read - to objectify women, both in his "eye candy" section and in his articles. And he doesn't even give a shit. Virtually all of his columns are porn-promoting, teacher-basing, women-hating, take-what-you-can-get-give-nothin-back pieces of crap. And if I ever meet him, you can bet I'll tell this to his face. I'm that pissed.

What makes me even angrier is the fact that we can have such a wonderful, wonderful, wonderful paper. Honestly, WHY, OH GOD, WHY IS IT SO BAD? I've honestly considered getting back into journalism (I really do miss being an editor) and change things around there. For crying out loud, PCC is one of the best and most diverse colleges in the nation! If only we could get a staff with a vision - a vision to see the infinite stories students and bring with them. A paper that truly reflects the cultural diversity that PCC embodies. And what about using the photos that the photography classes take, not just the ones the staff takes last minute.

But what do we get instead? Eye candy. Embarrassing errors that contribute to the PCC stereotype. Sloppy articles, cluttered layouts, a perverted editor in chief that wants to turn what could be a gem of a paper into a mixture of Hustler and The National Enquirer. Shame on them.

yami

I've never found that the female gaze is taken as seriously or has as much control over a sexualized social environment as the male gaze. Even when men are offered up for female consumption, displays of female desire tend to be interpreted as a signal of general sexual availability or otherwise reclaimed as an object for the male gaze, or ignored. IME, the only thing that really breaks that dynamic is giving queer male desire the same legitimacy and presence as straight male desire. Takehome lesson, always invite lots of gay men to your parties.

I'm not sure how this translates to print media, exactly, but it is the source of my discomfort with the "objectify everyone equally" strategy. Society's not equal.

I'm pretty sure the California Tech wouldn't be above a stunt like this, if students weren't so hung up on complaining about how they can't get dates 'cause of the gender ratio and Tech girls are all ugly anyway...

Sean H

Hugo,

I always find the feminist response to these things terribly ironic. It's not like they tied these girls up and forced them to be photographed. They are independent agents, free to do what they please, but if they do it in a way that you object to, they are victims. Feminists are all for respecting women's decisions until those decisions are contrary to their ideology.

Don't get me wrong, I think it's inappropriate too, but for the good "old fashioned" reasons of taste, modesty, and lack of educational value. You say it's vulgar - I agree. What say you to the recent cartoon of the Virgin Mary implying she had an STD that appeared in the UVA Cavalier? Was that vulgar too, or does your vulgar meter only peg on girls in bikinis?

Hugo

Sean, none of us are claiming that Fabiola is a "victim." Women are frequently complicit in their own exploitation, for a variety of reasons. But no serious feminist believes that whatever a woman "chooses" to do is above reproach. Her choice is exercised in a context of pressures and expectations, and that's where we have a problem.

If I were at UVA, I would certainly have been infuriated by such a cartoon. But a cartoon of a figure from religious history is different than a scantily-clad photo of an actual student, and the offense of the latter is considerably greater.

Brian, your comment was deleted, for obvious reasons.

mythago

Sean H., I'm not sure what the behavior of the photographed women has to do with the editor's decision to run this "Eye Candy" feature. It's not like the women tied these boys up and forced them to write about, and take pictures of, them as "Eye Candy".

Sean H

Ok - she's not a victim - she is complicit in her own exploitation and her choice is exercised in a context of pressures and expectations. Do you even appreciate how condescending that sounds? What does it even mean?

Yes, Mr. Shopkeeper, I know you are giving me your money because I have a gun to your head, but you aren't a victim, you are exercising choices in a context of pressures and expectations.

Come on - she's wrong, the editors are wrong, but it isn't about exploitation, it's about bad taste, vulgarity, and immodesty. Your problem is that you can tolerate and even approve vulgarity and immodesty in situations that agree with your political beliefs, but you have to cook up some sort of "exploitation" argument when they don't. I suspect if a pack of coeds marched naked into the student union to protest for animal rights that would be OK, but if they did it to titilate some frat boys that's exploitation.

sophonisba

I suspect if a pack of coeds marched naked into the student union to protest for animal rights that would be OK,

You suspect that, do you? The great thing about living in a world full of facts is that you don't have to rely on your suspicions. If you can't be bothered to look up some feminist critiques of PETA, who use precisely that sort of imagery in their ad campaigns and are throughly despised for it, just ask Hugo about the avalanche of angry, fed-up comments he gets from feminists every time he mentions supporting them. Or try Google. This stuff isn't a feminist trade secret, we talk about it all the time.

sophonisba

a pack of coeds

And Sean? If you mean female college students, say so. Co-ed is short for co-educational, which means educating both men and women. As written, your post refers to a group of mixed-sex students, but somehow I suspect (I, too, suspect things sometimes) that's not what you meant. And I'm sure you don't mean to appear sexist.

Connie

I remember picking up the Courier and feeling conflicted. Was I the only one who thought this "eye candy" project was disgusting? Perhaps, they were going to post men as well and it wouldn't be so bad, I thought. I figured this was a chance for PCC students who otherwise wouldn't be publicly recognized. But I know that's definitely not the right approach. The fact that you have to submit a picture and have the editors decide the quality of your beauty is ridiculous and then to go on and write something totally demeaning. Yuck!

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