I don’t even know what to say about it, but I recently watched Camille Paglia, the only famous feminist worth anything at all, on Bravo’s Watch What Happens Live. Real Housewives fans went berserk last month when Camille revealed in a Salon interview that she had the highest regard for the production techniques and the ladies themselves:
Bravo’s “Real Housewives” series! Whoever is doing the photography and editing for “Real Housewives of New Jersey” and also for “Real Housewives of Beverly Hills” and “Real Housewives of Orange County” — this is absolutely cutting edge. I can watch the same episode — while I’m cooking and eating dinner – five, six, or seven times. I savor how visually interesting they are — how long each shot lasts and how much information it contains. This is intelligent and sophisticated documentary film making that really needs to be honored.
I read a few months ago that Gloria Steinem hates “Real Housewives of New Jersey” and would be glad to picket it. Well, there’s the big difference between Steinem and me. She sees the show as a distortion of women, while I see it as a revelation of the deep truth about female sexuality. Right there is the proof of why feminism has faded. Those second-wave feminists had a utopian view of women — they constantly asserted that anything negative about women is a projection by men. That’s not what I see on “Real Housewives”! It’s like the Discovery Channel — sending a camera to the African savannah to watch the cheetahs stalking the gazelles! What you’re seeing is the primal battles going on among women. Men are marginalized on these shows — they’re eye candy, to use Obama’s phrase, on the borderlines of the ferocity of female sexuality.
This article is truly fascinating as it looks at female power that’s not related to the tailored suit and briefcase business set. Professor Paglia brings up some thought provoking issues about the direction of modern feminism and uses the Real Housewives as examples. There was a only bit of this on the Bravo show but it quickly devolved into which housewives she thought were hot and an examination of the housewife-on-housewife kissing. Then Tamara Barney, her favorite “tomboyish” housewife called in and Camille was completely star struck and lost her shit entirely. I guess Watch What Happens Live is not the forum for intellectual discourse on female power but that’s what made the few minutes that is was all the more remarkable.
The clips are worth watching. I only wish I could show you the taped broadcast so you could see the idiot Andy Cohen trying to conduct his usual alcohol-sodden mess while Camille reels off salient intellectual points. His expression is one of someone who just found gold coins in a pile of horse manure.
Watch What Happens clips (TV Broadcast)
Housewives Sociology Watch Camille Paglia break down how the ‘Housewives’ have helped women in the workplace
Socially Unacceptable Camille Paglia names the ‘Housewives’ who are most socially acceptable and unacceptable.
Watch What Happens After (online after show)
Dynamics Part I: Camille Paglia analyzes the family dynamics of #RHONJ
‘Housewives’ and Feminism Part II: Camille Paglia looks at the feminism of the ‘Housewives’