“As soon as teenage girls start to profess love for something, everyone else becomes totally dismissive of it. Teenage girls are open season for the cruelest bullying that our society can dream up. Everyone’s vicious to them. They’re vicious to each other. Hell, they’re even vicious to themselves. It’s terrible.
“So if teenage girls have something that they love, isn’t that a good thing? Isn’t it better for them to find some words they believe in, words like the ‘fire-proof and fearless’ lyrics that Jacqui wrote? Isn’t it better for them to put those words on their arm in a tattoo than for them to cut gashes in that same skin? Shouldn’t we be grateful when teenage girls love our work? Shouldn’t that be a fucking honor?
“It’s used as the cheapest, easiest test of crap, isn’t it? If teenage girls love a movie, a book, a band, then it’s immediately classified as mediocre shit. Well, I’m not going to stand for that. Someone needs to treat them like they’re precious, and if nobody else is ready to step up, I guess it’s up to us to put them on the path to recognizing that about themselves.””
a character from The Devil’s Mixtape. (via valjeans)
Every now and then, something comes along on your dash that opens your eyes and makes you question assumptions you didn’t even realize you were making.
This former teenage girl fell in love with Rush, RPGs, Russian literature, ancient history, sci fi flicks, and Led Zeppelin. I’d say she had pretty good taste. So why have I always defaulted to marginalizing or dismissing the tastes of other teenage girls? Why have I always counted the large teenage female presence in fandom as a black mark against it, or at least something that needs to be explained or surmounted for older fans to participate or engage? Why have I assumed that teenage girls as a whole are incapable of critical analysis or meaningful engagement with the same media that I enjoy, when it was the critical analysis and meaningful engagement of a teenage girl that got me into much of the same media I enjoy now?
Wow. Talk about not even recognizing the patriarchy at work.
word. I tend to have a tendency to be embarrassed about the things I liked when I was younger, and if teenage girls like something now I tend to run in the other direction. But maybe that’s wrong.
And maybe we need to think critically about why teenage girls like certain things in large numbers. Heck I’m hella critical of Twlight but I think a lot of teenage girls fell for it because it was a story about an awkward teenage girl who, granted, finds this creepy man who is obsessed with her. And a lot of teenage girls are wishing someone would want them because they feel awkward, like Bella, and also don’t necessarily know that’s a really unhealthy relationship model, so the idea of a guy who finds them attractive no matter how awkward they are and won’t leave them sounds a lot better than being forever alone and all. I know a lot of people also liked it primarily because it was dramatic and they wanted to know what would happen next. Plenty of adults read stuff for the same reasons. And it’s kind of elitist and dare I say it classist to assume that people should only want to read stuff that has been dubbed “high literary merit” when most people don’t even have much free time to read. And lots of people would find the language of many “classics” inaccessible.
So yeah, that got kind of tangential but I think you could make this argument for a lot of things that are dismissed as something teenage girls like. We should all be nicer to teenage girls, I think.
Interesting… commentary later