For the first time in four years, the acting categories of the Academy Awards are lily-white. It's a curious circumstance, since one of this year's Best Picture nominees, Selma, features a predominantly Black cast.
Look, I don’t think the Oscars are all bad. There are some good films nominated, for sure. I’m rooting for Selma as Best Picture and Citizenfour for Best Documentary. I bet Patricia Arquette will snag Best Actress for her excellent role inBoyhood and I like howThe Imitation Game centers its story around the destructiveness of homophobia and sexism. But... that’s pretty much it.
On Backtalk, hosts Amy Lam and Sarah Mirk discuss top pop culture stories of the week, offering snappy feminist analysis on the issues, people, and media that are making headlines right now.
This week, Amy shrugs her shoulders at the Oscars, Sarah gets all excited about nonmonogamy on House of Cards, and comedian Jessica Williams gets props. Plus: one thing we read, one thing we heard, and one thing we saw this week. The song featured on this week's episode is "Recognition" by THEEsatisfaction.
This episode of Backtalk is brought to you by the Gender Studies Symposium at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, Oregon. Scheduled for March 11-13, the symposium is a free series of lectures, workshops, panel discussions, and performances exploring issues of gender and sexuality. Learn more about this year's free schedule of events at go.lclark.edu/gendersymp.
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Beasts of the Southern Wild is the only film I've seen of this year's Best Picture Nominees. As someone who was once a little black girl who loved fantasy, I had to see it.
When Quvenzhané Wallis started filming her starring role as Hushpuppy, she was only five years old, just a year older than my daughter is now. About 15 minutes into the movie, I commented to my husband that Hushpuppy reminded me so much of our daughter. Like Hushpuppy, our girl has a fabulous head of curls and a penchant for running around without pants (we keep that indoors, don't worry). And like Hushpuppy and Quvenzhané herself, she's independent, determined, and brimming with energy and confidence.
So it broke my heart when I saw The Onion's "joke" calling Quvenzhané Wallis one of the most hateful words you can call a girl or a woman in the English language. On top of being sad and appalled for Wallis and her family, I also couldn't help but think of my daughter and the inevitable day that she will hear that word directed at her for the first time.