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  • Katie shared from The Happiness Illusion: How the media sold us a fairytale by Luke Hockley, Nadi Fadina
    And it is that opportunity that bears the brunt of repression heaped onto the archetypal figure appropriated by these films. The violence of this repression is powerfully symbolic of an urgent and pressing anxiety about threats to the ideological seam of old age performativity. It marks a similarly urgent and pressing need to repress into the cultural unconscious any conscious awareness of old age performativity. Finally, it also marks a no less pressing and urgent need to secure the mythological alignment between old age performativity and the illusion of conscious embodiment.
  • Katie shared from The Happiness Illusion: How the media sold us a fairytale by Luke Hockley, Nadi Fadina
    To conclude, this then suggests two points. First, the regulatory discourses embedded in the punishment of Pfeiffer and Theron as Lamia and Ravenna extend to include the ongoing construction, reiteration and embodiment of old age performativity. And, crucially, the labour of this cultural production is rendered mythological in the Barthesian sense, even as it is inserted into the frame of myth and fairytale by the appropriation of the Snow White story. Second, the ‘aging beauty myth’, and its alignment to the cultural verisimilitude of Stardust and Snow White and the Huntsman, is, simultaneously,...
  • Katie shared from The Happiness Illusion: How the media sold us a fairytale by Luke Hockley, Nadi Fadina
    One further point needs to be made about the spectacular transition from beauty to abjection, from youth to decrepitude, made by the crone archetype. Because these transitions conclude with Pfeiffer and Theron marked with the signs of old age, old age is fixed as an unavoidable stage of life; a stage that may be temporarily forestalled, but one which will inevitably take its course. Thus, old age is represented as a fixed and knowable property of the body, and as an embodied, and hence biologically determined stage of life. The extent to which we should see biological aging as a fixed and knowable...
  • Katie shared from The Happiness Illusion: How the media sold us a fairytale by Luke Hockley, Nadi Fadina
    Here, then, is the nub of the matter: this flesh is not pathologized simply because it bears the signs of aging, but also because those signs of aging are a potent reminder of our universal mortality. Thus, in effect, the depoliticized speech of the aging beauty myth serves to silence mortality discourse, whilst the policing of chronological decorum forges a powerful alignment with western silences and taboos about death and dying. This silencing of mortality discourse returns the argument to archetype, and, following Bettelheim (1991), its propensity to symbolize the repressions of the unconscious.
  • Katie shared from The Happiness Illusion: How the media sold us a fairytale by Luke Hockley, Nadi Fadina
    The point that really needs to be made here is that the cultural verisimilitude of Stardust and Snow White and the Huntsman is highly reliant on its reiteration of a specific myth of Aging Beauty, whilst simultaneously it draws on the regulatory discourses that reflect those illuminated in the pathologization of Madonna: discourses that define and police chronological decorum. By the same token, this play of cultural verisimilitude illuminates some of the cultural anxieties (both public and personal) that attend the feared collapse of the Aging Beauty myth. As with the CGI-enhanced performances...