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  By now, you’ve probably seen the plethora of Tumblr renditions of Marvel hero Wolverine as a Disney Princess. The idea is truly clever: David J Prokopetz invited artists to illustrate Wolver-Princess in celebration of Disney’s acquisition of Marvel. But have you considered just how brilliant this idea is?     In addition to being comical (get it?), the illustrations are a sharp examination of the feminine and masculine images we consume throughout our childhood. Wolverine is the embodiment of turn-of-the-century masculine ideals: athletic, muscled, even volatile and unpredictable....
  Women come in all shapes and sizes. Plastic mannequins, on the other hand, rarely do.  The average woman in the UK is a size 16, but most British stores only display size 10 mannequins. The British women’s and equalities minister Jo Swinson has long been combating the narrow focus on thinner, whiter, younger models of feminine beauty in fashion; she writes, “[the image] is reinforced from the catwalks right through to shop mannequins.” She suggests a profoundly disturbing correlation between the lack of diversity in...
  If you’ve ever seen Toddlers & Tiaras, you’ve probably noticed that its allure lies in large part in our society’s obsession with what many consider to be unnatural or freakish. The beauty pageants shown take female beauty ideals to a upsetting extreme of sexualized infancy; toddlers parade on stage in Pretty Woman’s prostitute outfit and the like, wearing heavy make-up and fake adult teeth. So much of the series’s premise is about being disgusted with the poor children, who obviously are not at fault. It’s...
Sweetie, a super young-looking computer-animated girl, has disturbingly attracted 20,000 sexual predators, all hailing from different countries and walks of life. Sweetie was created by human rights group Terre des Hommes Netherlands to bring to light the victimization of children in developing countries. After chatting with the 10-year-old Filipino girl in chat rooms, many older men solicited her for "sex performances" online.    Members of Terre des Homme entered chat rooms posing as Sweetie, but never approached men first. “We identified ourselves as 10-year-old Filipino girls. We did not...
In an increasing effort to be more diverse, Marvel Comics will be releasing a new series this February whose lead character is a teenage Muslim girl named Kamala Khan. Originally from Pakistan but living in Jersey City, Khan will struggle to not just combat super-villains with her kick-ass superpowers, (she can shape-shift!) but also address personal conflicts between her family’s expectations and her own desires. Khan’s character originated from a conversation between two Marvel editors, Sana Amanat and Steve Wacker. As Amanat explains, “I was telling him...
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