Saturday, August 4, 2012

Street Cred

Belgian film-student Sofie Peeters decided to make the daily sexual harrasment she endured on the streets of Brussels the focus of a project for her course at RIT. The result was "Femme de la Rue". I read about it in this article in today's paper, and a short clip of the work is included with the article on the Guardian website.

A quick google leads to the full length work, which can be found contained within a Youtube video clip that starts with Sophie Peeters being interviewed on the Belgian televion programme Terzake [To The Point] followed by the "Femme de la Rue" documentary in its entirity. While it may be enlightening for about half the population to see from the point-of-view of the other half what harrassment looks like as it is recorded from Sophie Peeter's miniature video camera and hidden microphone, or from a camera used openly to record Sophie as she walked the vicinity of her flat in Brussels, it's interesting too that the project is presented in a way that emphasies the "I'm not racist but ..." aspect which, if it hadn't been explicitly brought up in the interview, I'm not sure I would have noticed.

One would have thought it sufficient that the footage recorded her experience: that the footage has to be presented in such a way that couches and qualifies her experience so as to carefully negotiate sensibilities of culture and race makes the project all the more delicate in its treatment of the topic. However, the greatest shame is that it had to be made at all.

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Weakening of Lara Croft

Laurie Penny offers some interesting insight into the recent re-imagining of Lara Croft as victim in New Statesman. It's a shame that thought-provoking articles like this aren't a staple in publications aimed specifically at gamers (you know, the ones with the word "Games" or "Gamer" in the title).
 The comments below the article are also worth perusing.

Lara Croft and rape stories: breaking down the bitch