Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Power & Empowerment- Final Blog Post

Character guide

What does it say about the Griffin household when the family dog is the voice of reason. Well, they are a dysfunctional, middle class, suburban family- mocking all aspects of pop culture. Each character; however, is marked my symbolic power or empowerment.

Peter Griffin, the father and head of the Griffin household is shown as an idiot. This is an image of power as far as gender roles go. It is shown that even as "an idiot" or a bad decision maker at the least, a man is still the head of the house hold.

Lois Griffin, once Lois Pewterschmidt, was the daughter of a very wealthy man. When she fell in love with Peter and got married she left her inheritance behind. Lois teaches piano lessons, but mostly takes care of her family. This is an image the take power away. Lois' character shows women putting being hopelessly in love, even if it is with a fool, and keeping the family together. Her character also shows her in the typcial housewife role.

Chris and Meg embody the awkwardness of being a teenager; however gender comes into play by letting Meg receive the brunt of jokes about her looks. Again stressing the importance of physical beauty in female, teenage adolescents.

The list could go on, but each character portrays a stereotype in our society. Pop culture is a source in which truths, satire, and social commentary are mixed together and fed back to an audience. From readings in this course, and class conversations, it is evident that people have a desire to regurgitate and commentate on all aspects of our society.

Family Guy makes references to all types of pop culture aspects and uses satire to make a statement. For exampe in many episodes Lois tries to help Meg be more attractive to the opposite sex. In one particular episode Lois tells Meg a shirt that says "Cum Dumpster" is very becoming on her (haha pun) However, this is a commentary on the way young women are portrayed in our society and parenting. Young women are forced to portray a certain role- attractive, and sexually promiscuous- "being a cum dumpster" will get you a guy? Also that idea of parents being a source of continuing these ideas instead of providing guidance. In this day and age, when the most popular high school graduation gift is plastic surgery ( i saw it on the news this morning) parents are clearly sending a message that physical appearance is an important aspect of who you are, and how others see you.

Wow, Family Guy- that is kind of deep.

1 comment:

Jessie said...

Jess-
I think that you've done a fine job of articulating examples of the issues, but haven't gone very deep w/ the analysis of why these issues are related to gender and hegemonic norms and societal power structures.
The main red flag is that you didn't use any sources (which, for your final post, I was surprised to see it had been omitted) from the course.
-Jessie