Leftist commentary from a mouthy bitch

Cultural Narratives and Other Just-So Stories.

I thought this was oddly fitting.

We in American culture have a lot of cultural narratives with very little basis in reality.  From “everybody knows women lie about rape all the time,” to Reagan’s welfare queens in Cadillacs or Haley Barbour’s Medicaid recipients in BMW’s, American culture is full of things “everybody knows” that have little or no basis in reality, or if they do, present such a skewed vision of that reality as to be worthless in light of fact.

The thing to remember when you’re deconstructing a cultural narrative is to ask yourself who it benefits.

Over the next week or so, I will be deconstructing some cultural narratives.  A few of them will the ones mentioned above, “women lie about rape all the time,” “teenaged Lolitas are constantly seducing unsuspecting older men,” and “Cadillac/BMW driving welfare/Medicaid recipients.”  I reserve the right to take on others as they occur, such as “all fat people are lazy and eat constantly.”

The thing that makes it so hard to pick out the cultural narratives to talk about is they surround us so completely, most of the time we’re completely oblivious to the things “everybody knows” that inform our worldview.  And the thing is, these narratives are quite frequently wrong, sometimes they’re just wishful thinking, sometimes they’re just plain dishonest and self-serving.

If you guys can think of any narratives you’d like to see me take on, feel free to chime in the comments.  I’m all ears.  I just had to delete one on the 1950s nuclear family.  I’ll save it for later.


Also, you may have noticed over on the right hand side, I’ve added a Donate button.  If you like watching me seethe, feel free to slide some cash my way to cover the costs of entertaining you with my over-developed sense of righteous indignation.

Pretty soon I’ll be adding a Podcast.  The first two episodes are recorded and concern Body Acceptance and living in American Culture as a fat woman. Just yours truly and three of her closest friends trying to make each other snort vodka out their noses.  It was fun as hell to record, profane as fuck, and a laugh riot to listen to.  Also, a nightmare to edit.  I had to break it into two, and could not find a good place to do that to save my life.  So if it seems like Part I’s a little, um, abrupt, that’s why.

One comment on “Cultural Narratives and Other Just-So Stories.

  1. Stax
    March 31, 2011

    I would love to see you take on the Invisible Illness = just lazy brigade, because clearly any sort of disability would have to show on the outside ALL THE TIME to be *real*. grrrr.

    You have already done quite a lot on the fat people never eat healthy and it’s their own fault myths.

    The [people of X subculture] are always [X stereotype} can get messy, but if you wanted to his those up – Black = criminal, asian = likes to study/good at math/can fix your computer, woman = really secretly wants to have babeeez or is definitely submissive, teens = only care about themselves and aren’t interested in hard work, learning disabilities = illiterate and unintelligent, Asperger’s = retardation…

    ummm and I should eat something if I am going to come up with more cultural “everybody knows” idiocy that runs rampant in our society.


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This entry was posted on March 30, 2011 by in Announcements, Featured Articles.

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