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May 28, 2009

Traditional Gender Roles Strong in Korean Entertainment

Gender roles have been reflected in each generation as people learn accordingly to their culture. As I was observing this persistent ?trend,? I noticed that it is particularly strong in Korea, where women that are not traditionally feminine and sexually desirable are rejected. This can be seen in the Korean entertainment industry, where they repeat the pattern of popularizing the traditionally fitting women as the stars. For an example, all-girl groups such as ?Wonder Girls? and ?Kara? are consistently sharing the number one spot, exhibiting overly exaggerated ?cuteness? through their appearance and singing. Group Kara even exchanged one of the "tough" older members to bring in two younger, "girly" singers. When these groups first appeared with their ?boyish? appearance and strong feministic songs, they continuously lost to other ?cutesy? groups and were barely recognized. The part I find to be most ridiculous is that they used to sing amazingly in their ?feministic? days, but now, I can?t believe they are even considered as professionals. Furthermore, other archetype celebrated is the ?sexy and desirable.? If the songs break away even a bit from the habitual feminine tones, the singers have to put on sexy clothes and performances in order to gain favor. I can?t believe this is such an ongoing popularity.
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May 26, 2009

Racism in GTA:SA

At first I didn't really feel that the main character in Grand Theft Auto being black and gangster was that big of a deal. I know its wrong to stereotype different races in this way, but I don't get why this game in particular made such a commotion. There is worse things than this on tv everyday that is openly available to children, but atleast for this game there was an effort made to make it harder for children to access. In order to buy the game I think you need to show your driver's liscense. On the other hand, once I watched that video on the internet cafe I was really shocked. I don't get why everyone happened to be heavy black men. So I guess in a way for me the biggest impact of racism was in this scene. Maybe it was alluding to African Americans as being poor and these heavy set black men were in the internet cafe because they could not afford to have internet in their own homes. So yes, I think there should be an effort to limit these types of racism in games, but I feel that it should be done as a whole, for movies as well as tv.
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May 25, 2009

Race in Video Games

When Looking at the arcade fighting game "Marvel vs. Capcom 2" I noticed some interesting aspects on race. Out of the 56 playable characters in the game only a few of them are black or dark skinned. One of the black characters is the character Storm who is one of the more powerful characters and is known to be one of the good guys in Marvel comics. However, she is completely covered in her white costume and even has white hair. Another character named Blackheart is completely black and is portrayed to be a demon who fights using powers from hell. Then there is the dark skinned character from India, Dhalism, who is made comical with a strectching ability and constant overuse of the word "yoga" as he fights. The last example would be the character named Akuma who is shown to be one of the bad guys. it looks like majority of the black and dark skinned characters are shown as either evil or funny. Even though Storm does not fall into those categories, she is made to be as white as possible to let her take on the same treatment as the light skinned characters of the game. The small percentage of dark skinned characters compared to light skinned characters by itself hints that there is racial discrimination going on during the making of the game. There is the idea still going on that being white or light skinned is better in videogames. This game follows the similar trend found in World of Warcraft with majority of people choosing light skinned character choices over dark skinned or black character choices.
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May 24, 2009

Gender Role Critique on

My Satellite TV went out this weekend and I was prone to my old VCR videos of Disney and old movies. I watched The Little Rascals and as I?m sure, everyone as a young child has seen it! Nonetheless, after learning about gender roles and the different techniques of filming I realized that gender role plays a big part of this movie. The movie is essentially about the big go-cart derby that is held annually at the fair and every year ?The Little Rascals? also known as the ?He-Man Woman Haters Club? wins this competition. Their ?He-Man Woman Haters Club? portrays the superiority of the male gender while girls are seen as inferior with ?cooties.? One of the prominent members of the club, Alfalfa, is ostracized from the club because of his undeniable love for Darla. The members of the club depict girls as tearing their club apart but ironically during the derby race, Darla aids the He-Man Woman Haters to victory. Her notable action raises awareness to the boys that women are not necessarily composed of ?cooties? but rather are considerate and loving. Darla symbolizes the transition and connection between the two genders; thus, the He-Man Woman Haters converges into the He-Man Woman Lovers and the two genders jointly run the club. Similarly, in today?s society women are considered and given the same equal rights as men.
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May 17, 2009

The Obama Brand

The graphics and the brand logo itself had a lot to do with the success Obama had during his campaign, but I think that there are two main ones his campaign was so successful. First the font, Gotham, that he used was very American, and gave a boost in that direction and away from the foreignness that accompanied his name, Barack Hussein Obama. Also his graphics had a very soft feel, that was more personable, as opposed to McCain whose use of font on his website gave it a strong, almost intimidating feel. However, for me the main reason that he was victorious in the presidential elections was that he reached out to the younger generation, which was a huge demographic. By marketing in such places like Youtube, and various other networks like MTV, teenagers and young adults were able to get a feel for him, and how he represented a sort of change that was appealing to them. This marketing technique was strategically brilliant, because I watched the q&a that took place on MTV, and Obama's answers were exactly what the younger generation wanted to hear, and for the one's that would not be appealing, his answers were sort of vague, but accepted, and by using Youtube it was nearly immpossible for the younger generation to miss.
Posted by      Carolyn O. at 10:52 AM PDT
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  Paulina Dinh  says:
I'd have to agree that the most prominent reason why Obama was so successful was because of his ability to reach out to the younger generations, especially celebrities. Consequently, one of the major youth brands, Obey, decided to launch t-shirts with his slogan "Hope" which further aids to his victory. Nonethless, his strategies have certainly reached out to many.
Posted on Wed, 27 May 2009 9:54 PM PDT by Paulina D.
  Jonathan Scott  says:
I think the two things that made his campaign successful were his slogan, and his ability to reach many different target audiences for a little bit of money, instead of the traditional large sums of money from very few donators. His campaign reached target audiences through the internet and was able to cater to their specific needs. He was able to reach these voters and gain a lot of support from previously untapped groups. This meant that he gained a little bit of money from a lot of sources which was never done before. This meant that he was not bound to certain special interest groups when running, which helped him cater to the public. He also used a slogan that was catchy. He used the slogan?s ?Hope? and ?Change.? These slogans captured the sense of disillusionment that the general public had with politics, and helped him get elected. Every single president throughout history has had an effective presidential slogan that helped them get elected. For example, even as far back as James Polk in 1844 used the slogan ?54* 40? or Fight,? which referred to the major issue of obtaining the Oregon Territory. Even recent presidents used slogans to get elected, such as Bill Clinton?s which was ?It?s the economy stupid.? This ability for people to be able to embody what the president is all about in a short phrase is an effective way to advertise, and allows them to be turned into a brand or symbol. Obama's superior ability to advertise and his superior policies won the election for Obama.
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May 12, 2009

Sarah Connor in Terminator 2

Sarah Connor was introduced to us from behind as she was doing chin-ups in her room. From this introduction, the audience can already assume that Sarah will be different from the typical, delicate actresses that we usually see on screen. Throughout the movie Sarah does just that, she displays very masculine behaviors. From fighting to shooting huge guns, Sarah shows the audience to not underestimate her as a heroin.

But does Sarah completely avoid any gender stereotype that we can anticipate from women in media?

Going back to the scene where we first see Sarah, she is fulfilling an obsession that most women encounter: to remain/become physically fit. In maximum-security isolation Sarah still manages to exercise and make sure her figure is toned and healthy. In reference to Craig's passage in the Signs Of Life, Sarah also becomes a woman's woman, where she is still able to look young, fit, and healthy despite having a child and being in the situation she is in.
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