Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Cultural heroine, c. early 21st century

I ran across this image in the RSS feed of a young woman's blog. It isn't a picture of the blog owner, just a picture she posted, apparently one she likes, as she mainly posts arresting pictures of young women, many of them models:

Click the image to see it as posted. I think this picture pretty much sums up the current zeitgeist, everything popular culture is fascinated with or uses: Extreme youth and attractiveness plus anonymity (the goggles, wig and pose obscuring the model's real features) contrasted with exhibitionism (the underwear) plus narcissism (she's ostensibly taking her own picture) plus voyeurism (we can see much more of her than she "intends" with the picture she is "taking").

This image reminds me of the pictures posted on a rich young Mexican girl's blog I stumbled on many years ago (and which has long since vanished). She posted pictures she'd taken of herself on the toilet. In the pictures she was nude, but had arranged her arms and legs to hide her nipples and her pussy, thus controlling the extent of her exhibitionism. No name, and the postings were clearly just for her friends, whom she addressed through nicknames.

But the image above really piles on the memes. In addition to exhibitionism, narcissism and so on, we can even add nostalgia, if that is the right term for including the 20th century camera she is holding.

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