I was watching an episode of Ellen DeGeneres in 2014 and as one of her openings for the show, she talked about an unbelievable topic, Bic Pens for Her. She presents such a hilarious but very informative argument. Just watch and you might understand why should never ask a feminist to represent a sexist product.
Do you think this product is sexist? Should Bic say anything about the release of this pen? Is it not that big of a deal? Let me know
I had recently seen this video online, and thought it was pretty funny to see Ellen's take on this silly new product. Why Bic felt that women needed to have their own line of pens (and in the most stereotypical feminine colors) is beyond me, but it's certainly not a topic to become heated about. Of all the things in the media that are demeaning toward women, these pens are hardly what I would call an issue. Sure, it's playing on gender stereotypes, which can never be good, but I see it as more of a sad attempt at marketing rather than something extremely offensive. However, when I had originally watched the video, I scrolled down to skim the comments, and many people were offended and, surprisingly, angry with Ellen. People were overreacting, saying that this video represented everything that was wrong with the feminist movement because she took a seemingly small topic and, they claimed, she turned it into something sexist when it was just a bunch of pens. Obviously these people missed the fact that Ellen was trying to make a joke based on the ridiculous idea that "pens for women" are any different than "pens for people in general." She simply used a small instance of sexism to make a commentary on how society stereotypes women, and made in into comedy. This was not intended to be a serious and heavy interpretation, because Ellen knows they're just pens. Hopefully, people realized that she was teasingly calling Bic out for trying to get her to support something so pointless in its jab toward women. She didn't make it a big deal. In fact, she made it into a joke, which is pretty much the opposite, so instead of using this opportunity to label her as a radical, male-bashing feminist, we should just appreciate the fact that Ellen brought the topic to the public effectively in her light-hearted way.
Post by 6cdeniseclaire on Mar 15, 2015 17:19:11 GMT
Ellen has an amazing way of portraying small things like this well and not creating a while war. She understands the power of humor and how it can break down barriers.
As for the Bic pens, it's quite absurd. What are we to do with the boys who like purple or pink? We all know fetus Beiber is in trouble. It's kind of funny how a pen company finds it necessary to go ahead and play off of stereotypical gender roles. I thought we were over this. Aren't we equal? No? Not yet? Well, I guess we just have to keep working.
Ellen is truly a genius and, much like Anja said, widely misinterpreted as a male bashing radical feminist. Radical feminism gives the entire concept of feminism a bad image, painting us all as bra burning, man hating, hate spewing sluts, while feminism is actually the belief that women deserve equal rights. My favorite part of the video was when she said "and they're pink and purple, the only two womanly colors." Stereotypes will always exist, but it's important for everyone to know how incomplete stereotypes are, and learn to make humor out of how idiotic it can get. By labeling a nonbiological or non clothing product "for man," or "for women," companies are enforcing stereotypes. I think Bic should think a bit more carefully next time they release a product. All things considered, if you believe women deserve equal rights, congratulations, you're a feminist. And saying you are "anti feminist" is saying you think it was better when women didn't have the right to vote or own property, etc. Separating something as everyday as writing utensils into male and female is proof of how much work we have left.
I find this very relevant to our discussions lately about gender stereotypes and social constructs. I also find it incredibly demeaning that Bic created a pen made especially for women, as if they couldn't handle or use the same pen that a men would. Just based on color and size, Bic is making a statement not only about what women should like and use, but is also further separating the genders. In my opinion, this idea may make money because it appeals to some, but I think it sends a bad message. If we continue to stress that men and women are unequal and seperste, then how are we supposed to be progressing towards complete equality. As previously stated, Ellen was about to make light of this situation in a comedic way, making it very enjoyable to listen to. But, her humor can only go so far, and all should be aware of the actual issue at hand.
I like how Ellen made this into a joke, which she does with many other products. I'm just disappointed in Bic for adding "for her", implying that only women could use these pens. Supposedly these pens are made specifically for women because of the shape of their hand, when we've been writing, drawing, painting, cutting, or doing anything with the same tools men use. The specification of gender of a product doesn't make it any less worthy in the hands of the opposite sex. This reminds me of the time my mom wanted to buy me a new bike, because the one I used was a boys BMX that belonged to my cousin. I refused to accept her buying me a new bike just because she wanted me to have a women's one. I was fine with my bike even though it was meant for boys because it was perfect for my height, and I still prefer it over the one she eventually bought me. This entire "for her" pens was a failed marketing plan by Bic. If they wanted this to be successful, they should've thought about how the public was going to accept this with the feminism stuff going on, and maybe released the pens with the a different title such as "elegence", because those pens are actually pretty nice.
Ok , obviously Bic is just selling this new product to make some of that “good good”, and by “good good”, I mean money. But like, who said pens belonged to only one gender? What makes pens only for men? Does it have penis? No. So Bic I’ll tell you something, just because it’s pink and has a soft -easy grip doesn’t mean that it will sell more than a normal pen. Heck! I will buy this pen and give it to a guy as a gift, that’ll make certain people unhappy. -_- Bic needs to get it together because it’s a shame that people have to have mixed feelings about who can or can’t use a pen. IT’S A PEN. Everyone one loses at least one in their life, and everyone has at least taken one that they found on the ground or something, no one ever questions if it’s a girl pen or a guy pen! A pen is a pen, and everyone need’s one.
Honestly I think this entire thing is more than just about pens being made "for girls". Obviously, that's the main topic of Ellen's video, but overall her purpose was to show how ridiculous gender stereotypes are. Constant mentioning of famous "mood wings" or just stereotyping females in the video really appealed to viewers' emotions and reason. It was meant to be outraging when Ellen said how far we've come based on the fact that we "even have pens for women". I think this just brings up a question of how we can stop the issue of gender labeling and stereotyping.