Comment: What’s behind #AskHerMore

[Jennie Couling | Design Sub Editor | UniVerse 9]

Opionions expressed here are the writer’s own and are not endorsed by Trident Media or Hertfordshire Students’ Union

When I first heard about the Ask Her More campaign I was a little sceptical.Yes, I’m a feminist and believe that female celebrities should be treated in the same way as male celebs, but I’ve always been confused by those who see feminism and fashion as incompatible. Why can’t a woman be intelligent and love her own style? I do want to know what a celebrity is wearing and who made it, but I also want to know about how they feel about being nominated, hear more about their work, and what they plan to do next. And that’s where the problem lies – if you actually listen to a whole red carpet interview with a female celeb (which, admittedly, I hadn’t until recently) many of them don’t make it past talking about outfits. At best it’s a “Who are you wearing?”, at worst “Are you going to be able to eat while wearing that?” (seriously, I’m sure these women are capable of choosing an outfit that allows them to function as a human). If you’re still unconvinced of the insanity of it watch Buzzfeed’s interview with Kevin Spacey as if he were a female actor. (http://www.buzzfeed.com/erinlarosa/kevin-spacey-hilariously-answers-questions-that-fe#.rr7Q8m3wY)

Jennie Couling
Jennie Couling

#AskHerMore was started by Amy Poehler at the Golden Globes which she hosted with best bud, Tina Fey. Phoeler, as part of her Smart Girls community (“change the world by being yourself”), tweeted, “The #RedCarpet is open and we want the media to #AskHerMore! Let’s go beyond ‘who are you wearing?’ and ask better questions! #GoldenGlobes” and within minutes fans inundated lazy reporters with suggestions for better questions such as; “What did your character teach you?” “What else would you like to achieve in your career?” “Tell us about a woman who really inspired you.”

The campaign was a hit with celebs and left many a sloppy reporter embarrassed at both the Globes and Oscars. Those who stuck with the typical “Tell us about how you got ready for this event,” “Are you going to be able to eat while you’re wearing that?” “How do you balance your career and your family?” were challenged and E! had to remove their manicam after so many celebs reacted negatively, or flat out refused to participate.

It would be easy for us to think that none of this affects us – what are the chances of us making it onto the red carpet anyway? But Hollywood has always shown the best and worst of society and it’s so unavoidable that there’s always a trickle down into everyday life.

So while women are only being asked about how they look, we’re perpetuating the idea that that’s all that matters. Which we all know is ridiculous – pretty might help but it’s little use without brains, and even less comfort if you can’t pay the bills. These celebs are talented artists, not mannequins. So let’s hope #AskHerMore survives until the next award season, because I want to know about Reese Witherspoon’s new production company and Julianne Moore’s work with Save the Children just as much as I want to see their dresses.

What are your thoughts on #AskHerMore? Let us know at @TridentMediaUK

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Comment: What’s behind #AskHerMore