Popularity and Celebrity by c9O41UH8


									            Popularity and Celebrity

               NEW271Y – 23 Mar. 2004

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            Spring Term Test
• Tuesday 6 April 2004 – 3:10-5:00 pm
• In-Class, No Aids
• Part 1: worth 20% - multiple choice, fill in
  the blanks, T/F
• Part 2: worth 50% - make briefs notes on
  terms, concepts, topics, modes
• Part 3: worth 30% - short essay

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• popularity ad. L. popularitas fellow-
  citizenship, popular bearing, in late L.
• The fact or condition of being approved,
  beloved, or admired by the people, or by
  many people; favour or acceptance with
  the people.
• Suggests achievements, qualities, skills
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            Definitions cont.
• Celebrity - a famous person, "one who is
• celebrate, f. L. celebr-em renowned.
• famous for being famous (regardless of
  what first brought them to fame).
• Can become celebrity just from having
  been on TV – even if untoward
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•   Jan 18, 2002 – Monica Lewinsky appeared
    at a news conference held in honor of her
    HBO documentary "Monica in Black and
    White." It largely consists of her answering
    questions from an audience of HBO staff
    and college students.
•   The former Whitehouse intern said she
    made the film partly because she was
    worried other TV movies being made about
    her case would perpetuate inaccuracies and
•   What is the biggest misconception people
    have about her?
•   “That I sought this celebrity by seducing the
    president and going to the White House with
    an agenda and turning on him so all of this
    could happen, so I could enjoy it and make
    millions of dollars and perpetuate my
    celebrity," she said. "And that I'm stupid,"
    she added.

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            Monica Lewinsky

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                    Celebrity Sister
   Associated Press Mar. 15, 2004
   NEW YORK - MTV has tapped another Simpson for a new reality show.
   Ashlee Simpson, the 19-year-old sister of pop star Jessica Simpson, will be
   the focus of "Ashlee," which will track her attempt to become a recording
   star. The six-episode series will air this summer.
   "Newlyweds: Nick & Jessica," starring Jessica Simpson and her husband,
   Nick Lachey, is now in its second season.
   The new show will follow Ashlee as she records her first album, on Geffen
   Records, auditions a band and breaks up with her boyfriend.
   "My series will show people all the hard work it takes to cut an album, and
   I'm excited for everyone to see this and live it right along with me," she said.
   "I'm really proud of everything that I've accomplished and I can't wait for the
   MTV audience to see it for themselves!"

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     Celebrity & Commodification
• Ego ideal                • December 29, 1999
• Role of images in          Slimmer Lewinsky
  production of ego          will promote Jenny
  ideal                      Craig diet
• Star quality
• Celebrity production –   • Jan. 5, 2000
  transformation           • Jenny Craig
• commodification            franchises opt out
                             of Lewinsky ads

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• Celebrity as object for audience
• Attainable, consumable
• Cf. Clueless – mobility of social status –
  central myth of US culture
• Performability – can be learned, imitated

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            Celebrity Commodity
• Today show
• Updated: 6:49 a.m. ET March 12, 2004
• It’s time to burn those UGG boots! Spring is just
  around the corner and to help you get in the
  cheery mood, celebrity style expert and "Today"
  contributor Steven Cojocaru offers a look at
  some of the must-have items and wardrobe
  secrets of celebs like Jessica Simpson, Britney
  Spears and Madonna.

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• Penhaligon's Travel Slippers are the "It" travel
  Perfect for slipper-ing about the house or strolling along
  the beach — Jessica Simpson loves the new super-soft
  Penhaligon’s Travel Slippers and just snapped them up
  in every color! She is obsessed and said she will be
  wearing them on her show — because they are so comfy
  and she can’t bear to take them off! They are made of
  Buttersoft Lamb Nappa leather and are very springy.
  The brand new (just launched) spring colors are Peony
  (pastel pink) and Powder (light blue/gray).
  Penhaligon’s Travel Slippers, $100. Penhaligons.co.uk.

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• The Generra Jacket is the "It" jacket
  You name the “it” girl — and she’s got this “it”
  jacket: Gwyneth Paltrow, Cameron Diaz, Halle
  Berry, Sarah Jessica Parker, Demi Moore and
  Madonna have all purchased the same light pink
  leather cropped zip-up jacket by the new hot
  line, Generra (also comes in a silvery gray). It's
  a great staple — and it’s machine washable.
  Generra Jacket, $498. Henri Bendel. 1-800-
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             Fairy Tale Myth
• Recognition – innate
• Pretty Woman
• Transformation
• Failure of perception
  (true worth)
  indicates moral

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                  Pop Princess
• Britney Spears has
  become the youngest
  singer to get a star on the
  Hollywood Walk of Fame.
• "This is something that
  I've dreamt about since
  I was a little girl. I can't
  believe I'm actually here
  with all of you amazing
  fans," she said.

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                • So only ersatz ego
                  ideal can be
                • Backlash – cf. Avril
                • Cultural currency
                  loses value
                • Age as factor in loss
                  of value for women

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        Consumption & Audiences
• Pomo theories of ID
• Consumption, conformism, simulacra, loss
  of referent, depthlessness
• Traditional sources of ID (family,
  community, nation) in decline –
• Consumption as alternative
• Paradox: identical to everyone else
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            Audience Studies
•   2 traditions: ‘effects’ & ‘uses’
•   Effects approach – hypodermic model
•   Power of media – domination & control
•   turn audiences into zombies
•   Mechanistic & deterministic
•   Audience as inert mass - Homogeneous,

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    Uses & gratifications approach
• Examines audience engagement
• Emphasize differences
• ‘Subjects have histories’
• textual analysis also emphasizes
  ambiguities – open – negotiation
• Plurality of contemporary cultural life

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                    • HOLLYWOOD
                    • March 22, 2004
                    • Jackson's First
                      Accuser May Testify
                    • Paris Hilton Thrown
                      From Horse
                    • Britney Spears
                      Cancels Concert
                      Due To Injury

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