Popular Culture It Is Not a Popular Term Paper

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Popular Culture

It is not a popular notion in today's culture that little girls are supposed to love dolls and little boys are supposed to love trucks and other masculine toys (Witt) However, if the toy is packaged in a new way it seems that it may be all right. The My Twinn may at first seem one of extreme socialization and not a desirable place to shop for a young lady, but on further examination at least that part of the equation is not disturbing. The purchaser is buying a friend for the girl that looks as close to her own self as a doll can. However, once socialization is taken out of the picture, it is disturbing in other ways. Modern culture gurus bemoan the commercialization of everything in this free market culture that has developed in the United States and seems to be taking over the world. This paper will examine the My Twinn website from the point-of-view of two popular culture philosophers, Sut Jhally and John Fiske.

From first glance the My Twinn product does have everything that a little girl could want and everything that a parent dreads. First of all the dolls themselves are not inexpensive, but the real problem lies in the fact that there are myriad accessories that the young lady will have to have once she in possession of the doll. The website also sells doll furniture, clothing styles so the girl and her twinn can dress alike, electronic gadgets and endless other accessories (My Twinn) that make this a particularly obnoxious capitalistic journey. The site is easy to navigate, has a kid friendly catalogue that can be accessed online, and all the colors are girl-pleasing pastels.

John Fiske is a watcher of popular culture who wrote a book on the subject in 1990. He says that "Culture is a living, active process: It can be developed only from within, it cannot be imposed from without or above." He is saying that the culture that Americans are developing, one in which consumerism is the master and everyone follows along like the rats to the Pied Piper, is the fault of the culture. If people were not buying the trinkets and the dolls that looked like their daughters, then they would not be sold. The idea itself of a doll that can provide a companion could be a good one, but the consumerism comes from the multitude of accessories that can be bought to compliment the doll.

This is interesting also in light of some of the writings and documentaries produced by another modern philosopher, Sut Jhally. He has produced movies that deal with all aspects of culture, but of particular interest to this discussion is his film about how television has shaped the working class. His main issue is that people have allowed themselves to take what they are given by the TV and try…

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Works Cited

Class Dismissed: How TV Frames the Working Class. Dir. Loretta Alper. Prod. Sut Jhally. Media Education Foundation. 2006. Film.

Fiske, John. Understanding Popular Culture. London: Routledge, 1990. Print.

Jhally, Sut. "Image-Based Culture: Advertising and Popular Culture." The World and I, 1990. Article.

Kornreich, Jennifer L., Kimberly D. Hearn, Giovanna Rodriguez, and Lucia F. O'Sullivan. "Sibling Influence, Gender Roles, and the Sexual Socialization of Urban Early Adolescent Girls." The Journal of Sex Research 40.1 (2003): 101- 113. Print.

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