Leia here, taking a slight break from reading entire assigned books (yes, plural) over a weekend, and writing papers otherwise too big for their own good.
So this semester I’m in a class about women and comedy. It (and for the most part the other girls) has a decisively feminist slant, to the point where I honestly wish we’d sidetrack for a day and talk about what feminism actually means so we’re all 1) on the same page, and 2) to cool down some of the subtle man-hating.
We just finished a unit on Jane Austen’s Emma, where we also watched Clueless. In addition, this article was assigned and the teacher posed the question, “Why does Ferris argue that Clueless, despite its contemporary setting, is more conservative?”
Around the room, girls volunteered answers, mostly quoting clips from the article. After about half the class tried answering–these feminism-arguing girls–I finally spoke up, stating what seemed really obvious to me. Now, I’m not the most vocally extroverted person, I don’t like speaking in class (more of a listener). It’s one of those things I do only if I feel there’s a point to be made that’s sorely missed, or if I’m really passionate about the day’s subject.
So it was after the teacher had gone around the room that I finally decided to speak. “It’s a romantic comedy. Most, if not all romantic comedies are about women getting men–the main character of Clueless actively wants to have a man. Emma, by comparison, wanted to maintain her independence for most of the novel.” Bulls-eye. It’s honestly why I can’t ever get interested in most rom-coms, and why there’s only two Disney movies that I tolerate.
Now why, in class where all but maybe 5 people are female–and most of those supposedly feminist–did it take so long for us to arrive at that?
There’s an irony here that’s perhaps more facepalm to me than funny.