WTF?! Yeah, that was my initial reaction. Not in a bad way, though…
Princesses Drop F-Bombs for Feminism by FCKH8.com</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/fckh8″>FCKH8.com</a>
; on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a>
Easier to berate kids for using cuss-words than face up to the crushing realities of sexual violence, gender stereotyping and pay inequality. Is this clip effective? Jury’s out on that one; but it’s certainly on-message…
I could pick, but I’m not going to. This is one of those odd occasions – District 9 springs to mind – when po-mo irony kinda works for me.
FCKH8‘s clip landed in my inbox via Upworthy.com
Unless you’re a pop megastar or an outspoken feminist, sifting and junking unedifying email isn’t really that big a deal.
So sign up for a bunch of stuff; just dive in. Sure, you might find yourself deluged with bunch of crap stuff, but then once in a while you’ll stumble across something that just blows you away, like this did me:
Aaron o’Keefe‘s just a regular guy: a music tutor. But when his students are tackling tunes like this – and with such applomb – he’s obviously doing something right. I think I actually prefer this to the original. I went straight back to Ӕnima after hearing this and it’s ok – good actually – but Tool never really happened for me until it put out Lateralus. Maynard Keenan is an amazing singer (see below) and it takes some balls (or maybe just childish fearlessness) to step into his shoes. This little girl is just fantastic, and the young guy on drums ain’t no slouch, either (check out those drum signatures [4.31-5.06]). Don’t let X-Factor/BGT get you down: not everyone’s chasing the money and/or vacuous adulation. For many it’s all about the art…
I likely wouldn’t have come across this if not for Jason Hirshhorn’s Media ReDEFined, along with Upworthy, GenderTrender and The Lefsetz Letter they’re my top go-to sites for current affairs stuff. Like I said up top, trawl the net and if something clicks, click: there are enough diamonds in the rough for everyone.
For Tool newbies, here’s the original recording from Ӕnima:
…and my favourite Keenan vocal performance, Wings For Marie Pts 1 and 2:
Poetry slams can be pretty hit or miss: there’s always a danger that the message can get lost in or distorted by the medium; that delivery might obfuscate substance, or lack thereof, in that egoistic complicity between performer and audience. Katie Roiphe‘s controversial 1993 tract The Morning After detected shades of this in its postmodern critique of America’s Take Back The Night movement, for example. With that in mind, I still found Pages Matam‘s Piñata (below) both convincing and moving. As we discover at 2.00 this is a subject close to his heart, and it’s heartening to see a man calling out sexism amongst his fellows: it happens too rarely. I’m surely not the only guy guilty at times of keeping his head down for fear of being alienated amongst my peers for not being ‘one of the lads’. I says much about the current state of sex relations that I and others feel that men who do so are still worthy of note, and that men persistently fail to alter their standards of behaviour until another man calls them out on same.
A piñata (little donkey – Mexican), for the uninitiated, is a device featuring in ceremonies and celebrations – commonly associated with Mexico, though thought to date back to ancient China – consisting of a hollow receptacle which is smashed open with sticks to release candy or other treats. It’s not hard to imagine why Matam seized upon it as metaphor for (sexual) violence. For cultural and experiential reasons that might require another whole post – or book – to elaborate on, men seem to be drawn to metaphorical modes of thinking, and nowhere more so than in this subject area, and Matam‘s response to a stranger’s crass proclamation well articulates certain toxic connotations of ‘beauty’ and ‘masculinity’.
Another nugget of genius that fell into my inbox via upworthy.com, one that ought to bring a smile to the face of anyone who’s been on the receiving end of the kind of aggressive, spiteful and often embarrassingly-inarticulate messages that deluge Twitter, Tumblr and Youtube. It’s been up awhile, and unsurprisingly, a fair proportion of the 5,571 comments on YT come from exactly the kind of morons that Clever Pie and Isabel Fay were taking aim at. Anyone for irony?
Thank You Hater! song is now available:
All profits will go to http://www.beatbullying.org/
Online aggression and cyber-bullying/harassment have been increasingly problematic in recent years: Osbourne/Gaga; Anita Sarkeesian; Moore/Burchill; Carolina Criado-Perez are just some of the more high-profile cases that spring to mind. 18 months on, Fay’s satire remains as timely and pertinent as ever, sadly. It’s as serious as it is funny, sending out a clear message to stay strong in the face of the bullies, and for that she is to be much commended…
On a related note, here’s a link to a recent study reported in the New Yorker: The Psychology of Online Comments. Social networking platforms are too often portrayed as the boogeyman, enabling, if not actually encouraging harmful group psychologies and feeding cultures of sexism, racism and general negativity and aggression. As so often, the truth is a little more nuanced than that: interesting reading.
Came across this clip via Upworthy.com. A more powerful testament to the power of music (or the value of recycling) is hard to imagine…
For further inspiration/information on the genesis of the orchestra, the film and tour, click here
Not rocket science, is it? But given that lawyers defending the Steubenville rapists argued consent on the part of the unconscious victim, this is clearly a lesson some of us haven’t learned yet…