why bother picking apart this song under a feminist microscope when there are far more blatantly misogynistic lyrics in modern music?
"Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer" is usually taught as inspirational verse and a statement against prejudice and mockery: Rudolph is visibly marked and consequently discriminated against, yet he rises above the catcalls to achieve fame and success. Sounds great, right? Let's look a little closer. Rudolph's moment of redemption comes not as the cause of any consciousness-raising, but because his difference (superficial as it is) is shown to have utility to the corporate body. He is accepted by his peers not for his own merits, but because circumstances conspired to harness his idiosyncrasy and turn it into profit for his employers. What is the real lesson we take from the fable of Rudolph, boys and girls? ***Difference will be tolerated and celebrated only if it can be put to the service of the power structure.*** Otherwise, you're just a wacko, and you can forget about those reindeer games for good. Once again, Santa Claus is portrayed here as an unfeeling, self-absorbed cad -- he makes no intervention in Rudolph's persecution until he needs to save his own ass (at least the TV special got that part right). But does Rudolph get his moment to tell the boss to screw himself; that his hypocrisy won't be tolerated? No, he's the first one tethered to the sled, happy to take the whip of his former oppressor as long as he can feel both useful to the corporation and validated by his peers. If I had a kid, this would be about the last lesson I'd want to teach her. [via]
"Yeah, I like Rudolph," said Sally.
"Then you're both assholes," Ed told us. "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a totally fucked-up story."
"Gimme a break," Sally said.
"I'm serious," Ed said. "I've been thinking about it." He took a swig from his rum bottle, then a swig from the Coke can in his other hand. "I'm serious. First Santa cuts Rudolph from the reindeer team 'cause he's handicapped, he's got this electronic nose, right, and the next thing you know, everyone's down on Rudolph, his parents, his girlfriend, all the shithead reindeers. Am I right?"
"Yeah," I said. "So what?"
"So Rudolph runs away and hooks up with the misfits, who are completely excellent, but he has to leave their island because of the Abominable Snowman, right? So after putting Rudolph through all this crap, Santa has the gall to go back to him and beg him to guide the sleigh, because it's foggy out, and all of a sudden the electronic nose is this big bonus item. Now Buddy, if you're Rudolph, what do you do?"
"You're a reindeer," I said. "It's not like you have much choice."
"See," he said. "You're a chickenshit, just like Rudolph. But if it was up to me, I'd say, 'Suck my moosecock, Santa, I wouldn't guide your sleigh tonight for a million bucks, you fat shit.' "
For people who are saying roofies didn't exist in the 40s, have you ever heard of being slipped a mickey?
What strikes me as anti-feminist about the song is the notion, which many on this thread have pointed out, that she feels she needs to play hard to get, and that she faces social stigma if she stays.
And at the end of the day, there is no place from which I will ever be comfortable telling someone of any gender that they're wrong for feeling uncomfortable about something that triggers them, regardless of whether or not I am able to perceive the same threat.
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