The Truth About Latinas in The Media Pg.11
TABLE OF CONTENT Title
One Woman's Success, Another Woman's Inspiration
How long does it take YOU, to do your hair and make-up?
Fashion for thought-it's more than what you wear
How media stereotypes Latinas through TV
Written by: Naomi Edited by:Edwin
One Woman’s Success, Another’s Inspiration. Maya Angelou, one of the greatest African American women of our time, a very accomplished poet, dramatist, novelist and civil rights activist, Maya is known for this great repertoire of things that she’s has achieved and done, but on a more magnified scale the results of her strength and accomplishment in the face of diversity prove to be more than just events in history but a continuous ripple of inspiration to younger generations of young African American women seeking and finding their own voice.
Maya Angelou is a woman of many great talents and an unfathomable personal motivation to persevere regardless of circumstance. A few of Maya Angelou’s many accomplishments include, having a career in the performing arts as a dancer and singer, she became a part of the Harlem Writers Guild and even became an editor for a magazine in Cairo Egypt, the list certainly does not end there. When you analyze the life of Maya all there is to see is a continuous connection between the arts, knowledge, motivation, and incredible achievements, even while raising a son on her own. Maya can be seen as an artist of life, not just perfected in one medium but many, from writing, to dancing, to acting to, singing, to speaking; she saw her mediums and used everyone to the fullest. Maya Angelou is a woman who faced mountains and obstacles but didn’t back down, she viewed them as opportunities to persevere and create beauty in areas that lacked it. A young African American woman by the name of Natasha Keith is a direct result of this kind of perseverance. Natasha is a student at Pierce College and an accomplished young poet, who has won several young poet competitions. In her life she has faced many of her own trials and oppositions. In a short statement she was asked to sum up how great African American women writers, like Maya Angelou have influenced her in her own writing, this is what she had to say. “Many African women writers such as Alice Walker, Phillis Wheatley, Toni Morrison and most of all Maya Angelou have inspired me in my own writing. These women lived in a time where they were told that they could not write and be a great writer simply because they were black even so, they all wrote because they loved to write and what they were writing was honest and they did not care what others were telling them. That inspires me in my writing to make sure that I am writing because it is something I love. The women are also inspiring because they did not let anybody take what they loved away from them even when they were told they are wasting their time because it does not matter. They show me that my writing is my own and that if I like it then that is what counts and that if I’m doing it because in my heart I have a longing to do it then I should continue writing. In all I look up to these women because without their courage I would not be the courageous writer that I am today, writing with no limits and leaving no emotions out but rather just writing to simply write.”‐ Natasha Keith
As we applaud the accomplishments of great women such as Maya Angelou and many others, so often we only take notice of their personal success and how they have changed a piece of history, but there’s so much more to it than the story of one woman. It’s truly amazing to see the fruit of their labor, and how their personal strife and success has become a beacon of light for young women such as Natasha, who have the same strength and motivation in themselves and desire to make it known. Though these to women have never met and may never meet there is a bond that has been created because of the perseverance.The accomplishments of Maya Angelou are incredible and the ripple effect of her can do attitude to a younger generation of African American women continues to prove and show the beauty of learning the art of life.
“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it.” ― Maya Angelou
Edited by: Nairi Fashion, it’s one of the most important aspects of our society, from what you wear, what car you drive, to how you decorate your house, we want what looks trendy and what is seen as “in”. But what are the effects of being “in”? So often we don’t see what the culture of trendiness does to our human culture. Recently, mainstream fashion has taken an interest in Native American patterns, mock apparel and tribal wear. You could walk into any clothing store, or boutique and find several items that have some sort of tribal patterning, a piece of jewelry with native accents, moccasin slippers, etc. The list goes on and on and it doesn’t just stop with clothing, mass media has jumped on the native bandwagon specifically visual media including music videos and advertisements there has been an influx in using Native American imagery to sell an idea or a product. The main problem with all the imagery and use of native patterns has to do with what is being suggested and how a complete race has been ousted by fashion and media’s use of what were once traditional patterns.
Recently there was a lawsuit by the Navajo tribe against Urban Outfitters for the use of their tribal patterns and the clothing description as “Navajo”. The Navajo tribe was upset at the fact that Urban Outfitters made mimic patterns of their own and then named them “Navajo”. The items sold at Urban Outfitters could not be compared to original Native designs, and the Navajo took great offense to their name being place on these items, that were clearly not Navajo. The products that were being sold ranged from women’s underwear to socks, tops and dresses. Urban Outfitters did change the title of the articles of clothing from “Navajo” to “printed”, which was a win for the Navajo tribe, but the fact still remains that these items are giving consumers a visually based distortion of what Native American really is. It’s more than just a printed tee. Fashion is just one part of the big picture, it’s the most accessible, but on a larger scale, the Native American style is being used on a much more thought provoking level, through visual medias. Media holds so much power over how we view the world and things in it; our minds are easily tricked into following those mainstream trends, shocker right? So what does that have to do with Native Americans, specifically women? Lots. Advertisers have found great success through sexualizing Native American women with their marketable campaigns. Many of these actual advertisements don’t depict real authentic native women but other women dressed in mock native attire, giving alluring looks and a more sexual appearance. Nonetheless the imagery is there and the rest is left up to our minds to put the pieces together, head dress, feathers, leather, patterns, mean wild woman, sexy native women. Which, statistics show that Native American women are at a higher risk for some kind of sexual assault, should we really be sexualizing this? And then we walk in to stores and most of the products with native patterns are mini skirts, off the shoulder shirts, short shorts and the like. What is that telling women? It’s even in music videos. One specific artist, Kesha has tapped into the native trend through her music videos where you see head dresses worn, tribal paint applied, feather ornaments etc. So what does it all mean, for one, I think that it’s giving people, consumers, a corrupt view of native culture and women by throwing it around like some kind of accessory to be used to promote a fake reality and a phony sex appeal. It diminishes the importance and authenticity of Native Americans. We intake these images and messages without wondering why they are being used or what actual Native American people think about it. We see the advertisements we watch the music videos, we notice the Native patterned mini skirts and then purchase them because they happen to be “in”. We don’t see mainstream fashion and media taking an interest in the wardrobe of nuns, so why is it okay to take the core ideas of Native Americans and mutilate them into a trendy sexually vamped money maker? Native Americans hold their cultural crafts to very high standards of quality specifically their clothing items, jewelry, rugs, and other various items as well as pottery. I’m pretty sure none of the Native American tribes feel honored that big clothing corporations take their patterns recreate them and sell them, while the real authentic Native American made products don’t even make it to large shopping centers. It also doesn’t seem likely that watching a music star use traditional ceremonial outfits in distasteful music videos and performances would give them much to feel proud about. The idea isn’t to not purchase items that have a Native feel or give a more rustic look, but to purchase them from REAL Native American vendors, not corporate companies disguising their products as Native. By purchasing these “fake” native inspired products we are supporting a whole view point that is not giving Native American women or men any kind of honor. Instead these products are supporting a skewed representation of the Native American culture. The effects of fashion and media are masked with the concept of trend and acceptance but at the end of the day when all the facts are laid out you can see exactly who is really “in” and who is “out”.
How Media Stereotypes Latinas through TV
Written by: Edwin Edited by: Naomi
Latina American women are one of the most stereotyped females out there. Latina women are always expected to be a certain way, in different levels of class, such as a “ghetto girl” for lower class or upper class being a “Firecracker”. TV is the far most stereotypical form of entertainment out their not because the directors are stereotyping or being racist but because as a community, that is how we see each other in a stereotypical form, TV just imitates the public and the public imitates the TV, causing a cycle of never-ending stereotype. The stereotypically projection upon Latinos has caused a one-dimensional cast for Latina women, either it being a good girl or bad girl and also being portrayed as the desirable, talented, and exotic Latina women. Latina women are being portrayed as these exotic creatures that everyone wants to see, or they show them as an “immigrant” Latinas, with darker skin, darker hair, and with an accent, what happen to the whole middle class, the people that have had two or three generations in America already? Why don’t they portray Latinas with one of them? Because society wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between them and white women, there have been times where the movie industry has used a Latina to act as a white person, because there is no difference in them, except having a different ethnic background, Latina women are just being underrepresented in media, playing only insignificant roles because of their weak identity. For example, the movie "Enough" with Jennifer Lopez is about a woman who is a waitress marries a white man and has his child. As the movie progresses, her husband starts having affairs with numerous females, there's nothing she can really do but let him walk all over her because of her weak identity. When she tries to leave him he beats her in front of their daughter a couple of times. When she finally has had enough and works up the courage, her friends help her run away and she gains her self confidence back, and comes back trained to fight and beats her ex-husband.
How Much Time Does it Take YOU, to do Your Hair and Make-Up? Written by: Nairi Gazandjian Edited by: Naomi Navarro I know you've all seen that one Armenian girl at the grocery store, with her dyed hair and make-up, her expensive clothing, all dolled up. After she leaves the store you see her get in a BMW or Mercedes...and you think to yourself, "Why on earth would someone take so much time to look nice just to go to the grocery store?" This is something almost all of us think about, because sometimes it just doesn't make much sense. A survey conducted by students show that Armenian-American women around the ages of 18-23 wake up in the morning at least an hour and half to two hours before their class starts to get ready. But why spend so much money and so much time looking good for school? A long time ago, Armenian women and men would dress up in rich clothing during weddings, parties, and other gatherings. The time it took for these women to prepare these costumes were very time consuming, and were only seasonal. The silk used to embroider the patterns was imported from China, which was only used by royalty. So, it's pretty obvious that Armenian women from centuries ago loved to look their best and worked with what they had. As years passed by, the same mind set remained. As Armenians immigrated to the US, they fell in love with the fashion and expensive clothing. I asked an Armenian student by the name of Ani Arsenyan at Glendale Community College why she takes so much time to get ready for school and this was her response, "Why not always look your best? There's nothing wrong with dressing up, you only live once." Traditions are passed on by our ancestors in every race, and in the Armenian culture, looking good is one of them.
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