Sunday, October 6, 2013

Miley Cyrus: History as a bad habits given new names and excuses

Sinead O’Connor’s Remarkable Open Letter To Miley Cyrus:

I suppose Miley Cyrus is being  post-post-post feminist with her girly show antics, and her skimpy gestures are post post modern , but what she is signifying is equally thread bare. It is not enough to just own the terms and images of subjugating vulgarity that have been put upon women for years, it now becomes necessary to act out . This purposeful reversal of all things smutty and denigrating , of a young woman assuming control of these images and using them as a means of empowerment, is a source for much cultural research to come. Personally, I think Cyrus isn't so much interested in revealing the mechanisms of power woven inextricably into language and the media that uses it; more likely she just wants to have fun. And that's fine. After years of being the Disney Barbie doll stand in Hannah Montana, cute, impulsive, sweetly mischievous and finally innocent of bad thoughts, who can blame her for taking an extended and profitable vacation on the other side of the mountain? Not I, of course, but the thing to remember is that what's there, in her current persona, amounts to very little that hasn't been done by older performers. Madonna? Lady Gaga? Marlena Dietrich? Anyone. The horror and significance is that millions a sweet tween-ager become the embodiment of crass and dirty.It was one thing for Madonna to "own" stereotypes and force us to consider our prepackaged world views, but by the time Cyrus (and Lady Gaga) got to the stage, the "owning" doesn't inspire introspection and a change in the zeitgeist, but , ironically, only men's eyes to ogle at women's bodies for the most traditional of reasons: men are horn dogs who like to see attractive, naked women. It's that simple. What one might have thought we were beyond  is something   , in fact, we have not and , seemingly, cannot transcend. Miley is merely seeing how far she can take his whole naughty she's playing. I still think she's trying to piss off her dad and his moonshine swilling pals.

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