Upon reading the first chapter “How to See Yourself” in How to See the World by Nicholas Mirzoeff and watching a few videos I have a very broad idea on how to approach identity. I feel like it can be approached in many different ways and I have a few different trains of thought.
I find it interesting that initially, a portrait of yourself was a symbol of status but now days, anyone can take a selfie on their front facing camera. And it presents us to the world for objectification. It is almost like we are giving people ourselves on a platter and saying, “JUDGE ME!” But then, there are still millions of people who can’t afford a clean water or food, let alone a camera or a phone. So in some ways it still is a symbol of status. But then there are people like Cindy Sherman who put on these characters and screams “JUDGE THEM!” Which feels totally different for a reason that I can’t explain. In some ways, I think that it might be because it feels like she gets to hide behind her personalities when we can’t.
There is also the girl who leaked her own nudes after hers were leaked by someone else (https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/video/2015/jan/21/naked-pictures-this-is-what-i-did-revenge-porn-emma-holten-video) which makes me want to applaud her. In this day and age it seems like people don’t care about consent. Which is terrifying. And this girl took that into her own hands in such a peculiar way that must have taken so much courage. Plus, body confidence is something that we all have to deal with and the promotion of body positivity is a great cause.
I have also watched the video on bad feminism (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fxt_MZKMdes&t=430s) and I feel like my only response to it can be found in the words of Ben Fagan when he says:
“And of course you care. And that’s the first step.
I am happy you are a feminist.”
I think that at this time and in this mind frame, I might look at it in three parts:
- How do I experience myself?
- How do others experience me?
- How do I experience others?