Women as Background Decoration: Part 2 – Tropes vs Women in Video Games

This is the second episode exploring the Women as Background Decoration trope in video games. In this installment we expand our discussion to examine how sexualized female bodies often occupy a dual role as both sexual playthings and the perpetual victims of male violence.

A trip down the anti-feminist rabbit hole →

Lammily
Humans and other animals

Lammily: a realistically proportioned Barbie

The Creators Project: “Alternative Barbie” Comes To Life

When Nickolay Lamm released images of a 3D-printed “real Barbie,” he fully expected them to go viral. Lamm specializes in creating visuals that highlight overlooked societal flaws; the strange proportions of Barbie dolls are one such glaring mistake. So, Lamm created a new version of the fashion doll using the Center for Disease Control’s average measurements for a 19-year-old girl. His message was, “Average is Beautiful.” As the story made its rounds, Lamm received a rush of requests: People wanted to know where they could buy a doll like the one he created.

Enter Lammily: a doll that will be manufactured according to Lamm’s model.

More images: Style and beauty.

Rather than waiting for toy companies to change their designs, let’s change them ourselves by creating a fashion doll that promotes realistic beauty standards.
Lammily: Average is Beautiful

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The Great Wall Of Vagina

The 9 metre long polyptych consists of four hundred plaster casts of vulvas, all of them unique, arranged into ten large panels.

“This is about grabbing the attention, using humour and spectacle, and then educating people about what normal women really look like”
Jamie McCartney – Artist

McCartney set out to make this project as broad and inclusive as possible. The age range of the women is from 18 to 76. Included are mothers and daughters, identical twins, transgendered men and women as well as a woman pre and post natal and another one pre and post labiaplasty.

“It’s time our society grew up around these issues and I’m certain that art has a role to play.”

(via HuffPo: ‘The Great Wall Of Vagina’ Is, Well, A Great Wall Of Vaginas (NSFW))

Craft and creativity, Humans and other animals

The Great Wall Of Vagina

UK-based sculptor Jamie McCartney has spent the better half of a decade creating hundreds of renderings of female genitalia. In a project titled “The Great Wall of Vagina,” the artist demonstrates not only his ability to craft effective word play, but also his knack for capturing the physical diversity of labia in a 30-foot polyptych.

Gallery

From ugly to freaky!

My Little Pony evolution

Most recently, Hasbro introduced “Equestria Girls,” dolls that are pony-girl hybrids (think “goth” Barbies with blue or green skin and a colorful ponytail) along with a special DVD to be released in August. Per a press release, the humanized figures are supposed to represent My Little Pony characters as teenage girls in high school.
From Pony To Person: The Disturbing Evolution Of My Little Pony

Humans and other animals

The disturbing evolution of My Little Pony

Despite valiant efforts made by parents, toy creators and even kids themselves to convince brands to produce gender-neutral toys, the divide between “boy” and “girl” products remains vast.

Gallery
Princess Merida
Light-based media

Pixar’s Merida ‘sexualised’ for induction into The Disney Princess Collection

Princess Merida - Sassy or sexy?

Princess Merida – Sassy or sexy?

Merida’s creator Brenda Chapman — who won an Oscar for writing and co-directing Brave — fiercely criticised Disney’s sexy makeover of her feisty heroine as “a blatantly sexist marketing move based on money.” Merida now appears slimmer, older and somewhat sexualised with seemingly higher cheekbones, heavier makeup, better groomed hair, a considerably thinner waistline and exposed shoulders.

“I think it’s atrocious what they have done to Merida. When little girls say they like it because it’s more sparkly, that’s all fine and good but, subconsciously, they are soaking in the sexy ‘come hither’ look and the skinny aspect of the new version. It’s horrible! Merida was created to break that mold — to give young girls a better, stronger role model, a more attainable role model, something of substance, not just a pretty face that waits around for romance.”

Related

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Michael Lunsford’s fully-dressed redesigns of superheroines, via Buzzfeed.

Fully awesome. DC, Marvel and the rest need to reboot with designs like these now.

Craft and creativity

Female superheroes with proper costumes

Michael Lunsford’s fully-dressed redesigns of superheroines.

Gallery
Topless Jihad

A man kicks a topless Femen activist, as she raises her fist to protest against Islamists in front of the Great Mosque of Paris, on April 3, 2013.

Amazing photographs on The Atlantic of yesterday’s “topless jihad” protests.

The demonstrations were in support of a young Tunisian activist named Amina Tyler. Last month, Tyler posted naked images of herself online, with the words “I own my body; it’s not the source of anyone’s honor” written on her bare chest. The head of Tunisia’s “Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice,” reportedly called for Tyler to be stoned to death for her putatively obscene actions, lest they lead to an epidemic.

Humans and other animals

Femen stages a ‘Topless Jihad’

Amazing photograph from The Atlantic from the “topless jihad” protests of April 2013.

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