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March 07, 2005

The Pink Revolution

Has anyone else found it a bit odd that every single magazine cover lauding Lebanon's march towards freedom has personified the uprising in hot women? Newsweek did it (and here), as did The Economist, and US News and World Report, and the Weekly Standard, and, if I had a copy of Time, I'm sure I'd find the same. It's not that I have any particular problem with the idea, but is there some archetype I'm unaware of that paints Democracy as a slim, 5'4"-5'8" women with curly hair and soft features? Are the schools segregated and only the female institutions are offering their charges the day off to protest? And, more to the point, isn't this emphasis a tad counterproductive? I'd be interested to see what imagery the Arab media is using (paging Abu Aardvark), as nothing seems quicker to instigate a fundie backlash than painting the movement as a girls-only uprising.

Speaking of which, it does seem that the fundie backlash is beginning, in the form of Hizballah-led peaceful rallies. With any luck, they'll stay that way.

Update: Seems that Insty noticed this too.

March 7, 2005 in The Middle East | Permalink

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Ezra is mystified:Has anyone else found it a bit odd that every single magazine cover lauding Lebanon's march towards freedom has personified the uprising in hot women? Newsweek did it (and here), as did The Economist, and US News and... [Read More]

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Comments

Praktike mentioned it last week:

http://www.liberalsagainstterrorism.com/drupal/?q=node/470

Posted by: Haggai | Mar 7, 2005 2:28:06 PM

Ezra - I've not done a systematic study, but impressionistically the Arab media imagery seems to have been much more on big crowds waving Lebanese flags, much less on individual girls. For what it's worth.

Posted by: the aardvark | Mar 7, 2005 3:27:24 PM

Dumb idea (flame away), but isn't this precisely the image we *want* to present to Arab males?

Support democracy at rallies, meet cute women.

Seriously. It does kind of beat, say, images of Donald Rumsfeld or Paul Wolfowitz.

Posted by: Chris Rasmussen | Mar 7, 2005 3:38:54 PM

Here's the good news. Back in the 60's and 70's, some fellows realized that most of the hot babes were Democrats. Gone are those days in the U.S. given many U.S. hotties are going for the big bucks. But maybe these babes in the new democracies harken back to the good old days in the U.S. I'm with Isty on this as he featured one hot Lebanese gal (and don't tell the wife).

Posted by: pgl | Mar 7, 2005 3:48:06 PM

Well, one could argue that female participation in political uprisings is more noteworthy in what are historically, very paternalistic societies. That's the "hard news" edge I can give. Otherwise, I think it is probably that people like looking at attractive, smiling women more than they like looking at men (and I mean people overall, including enough women to make the numbers work). It's kinda like when there's a cover story on breast cancer and a woman is posing nude on the front. One would never see a naked man with a cover story on testicular cancer. The closest you would get is Lance Armstrong's smiling mug, not a thigh shot.

Posted by: Matt Singer | Mar 7, 2005 3:52:50 PM

This may be a photographic aesthetic concern. A sea of orange, like the Ukrainian demonstrations, makes for a great panaromic shot. On the other hand, the Cedar Revolution is getting its name from a small icon on a small flag. In other words, in order to compose a photograph that communicates the story, one has to zoom in quite a bit. And when you zoom in, you see the faces of the individual protestors. And inevitably, freedom loving chicks are h0tt.

The flip side is, these demonstrations may not be as huge as they are being made out to be, and so photojournalists are eschewing powerful panoramic shots in favor of moving personal shots.

That said, what does it say about us when our initial reaction to the pictures of women finally shaking off the shackles of dictatorship is "I'd hit it"?

Posted by: diddy | Mar 7, 2005 4:16:24 PM

If those magazines sucked bush off any harder his dick would be coming out of their ass.

"BUSH CAN CHANGE THE WORLD!"--Newsweek

Posted by: Mikey | Mar 7, 2005 4:33:14 PM

Hot Lebanese women? Damn, I thought you said something else...

Posted by: SP | Mar 7, 2005 5:01:32 PM

I wonder about some other things regarding these public demonstrations too. Like, where did they get all those spiffy, brand new looking flags? Who did all the nice choreography? All of it looks so TV-ready.

Posted by: sprocket | Mar 7, 2005 5:11:06 PM

Shakira is part Lebanese...and she is fine.

Posted by: Steve C | Mar 7, 2005 6:13:00 PM

I heard that on NPR today that Hezbollah might be able to draw larger crowds than were protesting earlier. Depressing.

Posted by: Sandals | Mar 7, 2005 7:19:02 PM

"...every single magazine cover lauding Lebanon's march towards freedom has personified the uprising in hot women..."

Isn't that what they call "Lebanese chic"?

Man, if I was Lebanese... I'd get really tired of that.

Posted by: Grumpy | Mar 7, 2005 8:17:43 PM

to quote the noted social commentator al bundy:

"pretty women make us buy beer. ugly women make us drink beer."

Posted by: harry near indy | Mar 7, 2005 10:20:57 PM

Ezra, you've obviously never been to Beirut, you poor guy.

Posted by: Ara | Mar 8, 2005 6:50:56 AM

some say that lebanese women r hot im from lebanon n i say that the lebanese women u c in the pics r the ugly ones....we have alot better lookin women

Posted by: a guy from lebanon | Nov 5, 2005 2:12:40 PM

what about those hot lebanese guys..?!! can i look after them..??

Posted by: petra | Dec 30, 2006 1:24:33 PM

Isn't that what they call "Lebanese chic"?

Man, if I was Lebanese... I'd get really tired of that.
http://www.6339.cn

Posted by: website design | Mar 19, 2007 8:49:39 AM

people are stranger

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