Sunday, May 17, 2009
Sterotypes in the media, and what we expect to hear from them...
"Still, looks -- or more specifically, a disconnect over looks -- played a role in how people responded to Prejean. As much as people like to pretend that looks don't matter, there are archetypes ingrained in our subconscious about what certain kinds of people are supposed to look like. And we make assumptions all the time based on those archetypes. When they don't match up, sometimes the accompanying discombobulation can be a pleasant surprise. As when the boy in the baggy pants and bandana turns out to be smartest guy in the class. When the fashion victim announces she has a doctorate in physics. Or when the nerdy talent show contestant turns out to have the voice of a diva."
The above quote is from an article that is very pointedly appropriate. Carrie Prejean did, in speaking out, the unthinkable in terms of what we expect from beauty queens: to think on the spot, out loud. I agree that her words came out less than fully baked, but in that stumbled answer she broke a stereotype.