The BBC is doing a documentary series on feminism, and last week, an episode aired focusing on young women activists. This could have been a great opportunity to showcase the influential and brave things that young women do every day in the name of women, but instead the BBC took this opportunity to hash out old stereotypes. Young feminist Sophia is faced with this comment from her mom, “She actually wears makeup, short skirts, and goes out sort of dressed to kill and then seems to think that no men should be paying her attention.” So the (female) reporter, asks Sophia if she “self-objectifies.” Sophia handles the question well, that “if you follow that chain of thought to its logical conclusion, then maybe I should go out in a burka.” But god, I still hate that tired old assumption–that if you’re a feminist, you must forgo all makeup and nice clothes and dress yourself in a burlap bag, or else you’re invited men to objectify and disrespect you, because they can’t help it, poor things.
Then there’s this long, annoying, pointless, drawn-out part of the interview focusing on how “angry” Sophia is, if she’s an “angry person” or if she’s angry about other things. Uh, yeah, she says, “commuting.” Glad that Sophia realized the ridiculousness of the question, but will millions of viewers? Check out the clip for yourself. Katy at Jezebel has more.