An Easy-To-Use Measure of Talent
As someone with an advanced degree in psychometrics, I often think about the ways in which we go about assessing things. It was how assessment is misused and abused that got me into the field in the first place, although its applications are many and are used formally and informally by one and all every day.
Some people of the more intellectual or academic sort use formal assessment methods, but are so burdened with bias (especially that derived from privilege), that even applying rigourously developed quantitative methods go horribly wrong once it comes to interpretation of analyses.
Most laypeople rely upon subjective ways of determining something’s value (on whatever scale is relevant), and in many cases, this is problematic. For example, I’ll never give a male friend’s assessment of another dude any credence whatsoever because of his guaranteed blindness due to male privilege. I speak from way too much unfortunate experience. Guys often respect each other, but most dudes hate women on some level. So a male friend’s dude-friend may be ‘cool’ among dudes, but a complete fucking rapist or rape apologist when among women.
Honestly, I like the idea of parsimony. If I can find a simple and quick way to figure out if something or someone is worth my increasingly precious time (ladies, you likely won’t come to start valuing your time until you get older and will waste almost uncountable hours on the bombastic sex), I cherish and hone it.
Given that I’m in between teaching semesters, and I have hours upon hours to devote to entertainment of one sort or another and to copious reading and writing, I’ve been putting some thinking into how not to waste my time. Essentially, how do I assess whether what I’m viewing, reading or listening to is worth my time?
As my commitment to radical feminism develops and deepens, I find there is little to view, read or listen to that has much value. There are very few women – never mind radical feminists – that produce entertainment or ‘art’. The male viewpoint predominates, and attempts by women to break into entertainment are often thwarted, especially if they aren’t willing to destroy the existence of women, and ultimately themselves, in the process. As a result, it is impossible to watch a film or television program that isn’t peppered with misogynistic slurs and insults, increasingly horrifying and glorified sexual violence, empornulated female characters, and really damaging, backwards, and confusing ‘moral lessons’. Truly good books that don’t trigger my ‘sausage alert’ with sexist language (he/mankind/man) and misogynistic stereotypes are few and far between. And even documentaries are heavily dickish. Most art isn’t really that inspiring. And is output from the past much better or worse than that of the present? Same shit, different seasoning, different era.
Sooooo, I have come up with a basic, little formula/criterion that I want to test out. And it’ll work with material produced during any era.
If you have to rely upon denigrating or exploiting women as the sex/subhuman class in some way in order to achieve success in your work, you don’t really have talent.
I’d argue that 99.9% of the work men have produced throughout time and including that of today lacks talent based on this criterion. And honestly, much of the shit that is produced today is so unoriginal, that the only thing that makes it any money is the Tits and Ass it exploits. So if you’re an artiste or a createur in some way (including you fun feminist types), put your s̶h̶i̶t̶e̶ work-of-art to the test. Have you relied upon sexual stereotypes, anti-woman slurs, sexay sexual violence or outright sexual exploitation in order to get it some attention? If you can say ‘no’ and it isn’t a defensive, knee-jerk sort of ‘no’, then I’ll take a look with a skeptical and critical eye.
And be honest with yourself, for fuck’s sake. Exploiting women is fucking shameful. And fucking unoriginal. And fucking boring. And sadly, too fucking easy these days.
Art is supposed to teach us something. Make us better as a society. If what is being produced today is any indication of the social/intellectual/creative/ethical direction our world is going in, it is certainly not forward motion.
Posted on August 20, 2015, in Feminism, Human Rights, Male Privilege, Violence and tagged art, creativity, Entertainment, film, Hollywood, misogyny, patriarchy, progress, television. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on An Easy-To-Use Measure of Talent.