parenting

Mom & Pop Culture: Princess Week!

As Disney continues to sell their princesses (and make no mistake, they’re selling a brand, not just characters), they continue to show us that people will eat up these negative messages as long as they’re packaged in an appealing way—in this case, in pinks and purples and lots of... Read more »

Mom & Pop Culture: The Grocery Game

Let’s use Disney as an example (since they’re one of the biggest offenders when it comes to branding). Sure, you might expect familiar Disney faces to pop up in places like mylar balloons in the florist department, on band-aids, shampoo, toothpaste, and tooth brushes in the health aisle... Read more »

Mom & Pop Culture: Occupy Sesame Street! How Not To Lose Your Activist Spirit

Fighting for social justice doesn’t need to stop when you give birth. In fact, in my opinion, we should fight even harder if we have to raise a kid or two in this world. Also, by continuing our activism postpartum, we’ll set kick-ass examples for our children. It’s win-win all... Read more »

Bringing Up Baby: 1987's Baby Boom VS. 2010's Life as We Know It

Welcome to the twenty-first century. Are either of these films accurate or comprehensive portrayals of their time? Not even remotely. But they reflect cultural attitudes surrounding women, motherhood, and work, and the putrefied trope of Heigl’s character didn’t exist in 1987. Heigl and... Read more »

Mom & Pop Culture: Dealing With The Halloween Hangover

Halloween is a time to bust out that creativity, play into the fantasy, and eat a ton of candy. It’s not a time to push adult sexuality or hyped up ideas of ideal bodies onto young kids. I’d rather by scared on Halloween by ghosts and goblins than by thoughts of little kids running amok... Read more »

Mom & Pop Culture: Serving Up a Feminist Parenting Perspective

Whether in the form of advertisements, cartoons, books, food, or toys, pop culture is out there and is feeding a host of tropes and stereotypes that can heavily impact a developing mind. This series will take a look at where pop culture, parenting and feminism meet, as we explore the affects (... Read more »

Anyone Else Up All Night Thinking About <em>Up All Night</em>?

I just finished watching the new NBC comedy Up All Night, and though repeat viewings might reveal plot holes and problematic jokes (it is a network sitcom, after all), I absolutely loved it. Will Arnett and Christina Applegate... Read more »

We're All Mad Here: Parenting While Crazy

One particularly interesting, troubling, and recurrent depiction of mental illness in pop culture comes up in the handling of of mentally ill or cognitively impaired parents, where the traditional parent/child roles are reversed to advance a storyline. It is notable that this often involves a... Read more »

Stage Left: "Mother Knows Best": on Abusive Parenting in TANGLED

Abusive parents are a real problem in the real world. I know more than a few people who upon seeing this movie connected Goethel’s behavior with that of their own parents, and took it as a cue to reassess their relationships. And because of that I think that this film, despite its flaws, has... Read more »

<em>L'illusionniste</em> Fails to Work its Magic

Best Animated Feature Film nominee L’illusionniste (The Illusionist) came out on DVD in the USA last week. I looked forward to seeing it, given that I enjoyed... Read more »

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What I Learned About Gender and Power from Sailor Moon

My life began in 1995 — the year I turned eight and became a divorced kid.    Read more »