Barbie and the Triumph of the Feminine

Greta Gerwig set out to film a feminist screed; instead she gave women permission to be themselves. The post Barbie and the Triumph of the Feminine appeared first on The American Conservative.

Even though it’s August, I’m making the call. The critics will declare Barbie to be the film for 2023, and 2023 will go down in history as the year of Barbie. The movie was not a masterpiece or a message that would change history. In fact, it only reaffirmed the feminist wisdom of the time. But, it did deliver something women, and especially American women secretly desire.

Barbieis a muddled ideological mess. It’s possible to read into the film anything from the fall of mankind to the Indo-European invasion in Europe. The film’s success is not a factor in its continued extraordinary box office success. It can’t be explained by the fact that many women had Barbies as children. The reason that there are more media devoted to boys’ childhood obsessions, is because women have a lower level of nostalgia. It’s really quite simple–the Barbiefilm has been a cult hit.


It’s okay if a movie isn’t great to become a cult classic. In fact, it’s even better if it isn’t. Rocky Horror Picture Show may be second-rate film, but teenagers have been reenacting the movie weekend after weekend since decades. The fact that amateur performers were never distracted by the filmmaking is a plus. Barbie, on the other hand, is interesting primarily for historical and anthropological reasons.

Women who bought glitzy clothes to watch the movie in the cinemas will throw candy-colored Barbie Parties once the film is available on streaming platforms. I predict that Ryan Gosling’s likeness will be placed on napkins and Pink Cadillac Margaritas to create a competition of Instagram photos.

It has nothing to do with Greta Gerwig’s girlboss campaign, which she carefully crafted. Some women may respond to misandry out of a sense of injustice. Many girls, who have heard agitprops about patriarchy their entire lives, feel a surge of confidence when their ideology is reinforced by a major motion film. It’s hard to explain the seemingly irresistible urge for girls to wear fuchsia clothing.

Our moment in the history is. The Covid Lockdowns of early 2020 have changed the appearance and feel in American cities and suburbs. Many, particularly in areas with deep blue hues like New York and San Francisco haven’t recovered.

After the mandate to shelter in place confined Americans into their homes, homeless camps became the only remnants of street life. Black Lives Matter then took over the streets, resulting in a reduction of police across the nation. Crime wave pushed the already fragile rule of law even further. Urban centers were virtually off-limits to many residents due to the influx of mentally ill people in downtowns, and the increase in violent crimes.


Market Street in San Francisco, which was once a popular shopping and tourist destination, has been overrun by drugs and criminals. Stores are closing down on the streets where tourists used to take pictures. Customers were scared to death of the bug and closed cafes and restaurants in the city. Women who liked the trendy atmosphere of the venues couldn’t keep them afloat by selling food on the go.

In keeping with the trend of pre-closures, the social life has migrated onto the media channels. Women are particularly affected by this kind of destruction of everyday social interaction, as we are more sensitive to it.

It’s true that much of this is self-inflicted. We were the infamous Karens who chastised strangers for standing close to another human being. In the San Francisco Bay Area, I’ve noticed that many people still wear masks when they go out in public. No matter how we assign blame, the fact remains that many people in San Francisco Bay area still wear masks. Most of them are women.

Covid-scare’s key socio-political feature was the recruitment and training of white women who would informally monitor their communities to ensure compliance with the social-justice agenda. Saira Rao, a social media influencer who traveled around the country charging thousands of dollars per plate for dinner parties where she criticized wealthy mothers for “white privilege,” started a successful business.

Awakeness has led to the erosion of beauty standards, in addition to political projects. The most notable features were the mainstreaming of obesity, and including men in the marketing of female brands. Jealous minds believed that exposure to different body types and facial characteristics could make all women equally attractive. This was also partly self-inflicted as a result female activism and the rise of feminist power within media company boardrooms.

I have always been sceptical about the success of the feminist project. Adopting any ideal of beauty involves excluding women who do not live up to that ideal. No matter how the “ten” is defined, not every woman can be considered a “ten”. Our aesthetic choices are not the result of an unjustified conspiracy by mass media conglomerates to shame fat people. These trends are a reflection of that has emerged within our society. A thin woman is desired because she demonstrates self-control. This trait is preferred in modern capitalism.

The changes in marketing that were implemented across the nation in 2020 did not affect our psyche but they succeeded in sucking out joy from our lives. Retail spaces were dominated by sleepers and shapeless dresses. Shopping became a chore when surgical masks were required. Fashion spreads replaced the aspirational with the mundane, and often the grotesque. The history of American woman was one of gloom and gloom.

Women may be lobbying for one thing but we vote with our money for another. In the case of Gerwig’s movie, it was an excuse to dress up in public for a national event. Participation creates a sense of camaraderie. After years of loneliness, shame and misery, our social lives have not yet returned to normal. It’s liberating.

No one should be embarrassed. Sociality is a part of human nature. Women want clean, safe cities. They also want to end the pandemic mentality. There are no masks, homeless camps or crimes in Barbie. There is instead a sea pink, a lively street scene, and heternormative female protagonist.

The film is full of ideologies, but its unambiguous feminist message allows viewers to enjoy themselves. After all, it is 2023. One needs a secular excuse to feel human. Barbieis the long-awaited reason to feel joy. It is not the triumphant feminism that it claims to be, but a subversive affirmation for femininity.

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