Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Bull-Pen Water Cooler

Some times you just gotta chat about stuff that isn't Work-related.  Blow off steam.  Share random news.  Ask for advice.  Tell everyone how drunk you are.  Whatever.  He's the place.
I just came across this on my facebook feed.  I guess this is the offensive image: 
image

And the notable quote is here:

It seems that in today’s desperate-for-sales comic book market, nothing is sacred. In the midst of world-saving adventures, today’s modern heroine breast feeds her child with zero modesty. Talk about work-life balance! It hearkens back to those Enjoli fragrance TV ads of the ’70s — I can bring home the bacon, fry it up in the pan, and never, never let you forget you’re a man…”  I’m just so impressed with this I-can-have-it-all super heroine. I had to wonder, did La Leche League (or as my wife took to calling them after she delivered our son,  ”The Breast Milk Mafia”) pay big-time sponsorship money for this cover? What a wholesome, family-friendly image!
 
Personally, I don't see why that is any more offensive than this:

image

or this:

image

But maybe I'm way off in "left" field?
«134567

Comments

  • I think I'm mostly offended by that first cover.  What the heck is up with those ladies' necks?

    As for the breastfeeding, kids gotta eat, no biggie.  Most moms I know (wife included) prefer to cover up when feeding, though.
  • Who?

    And what does he care? It's a BKV book, the breast will probably die in the last issue.
  • Dave Dorman is a huge Star Wars artist...  although that Crimson Empire cover isn't his best work...
  • edited January 2012
    If Dave Dorman doesn't like breast-feeding, he shouldn't breast-feed.

    The notion that an image like this of a mother feeding her child isn't "family-friendly"... just boggles my mind.
  • I'm more offended that she didn't cover up her wings. LETTIN' IT ALL HANG OUT.
  • edited January 2012
    I've been a big Dave Dorman fan since Aliens: Tribes and his Shadowrun work, but that cover's a mess.

    Back to the "offensive" image, that lady hardly looks like she just delivered a kid.  Maybe she gave birth on the fashion show runway?
  • That kid's bi-racial. I can't wait until Fox News catches wind of this.
  • edited January 2012
    The second two covers are more honest about their sexual pretensions. They're bondage art, hiding as fantasy, but bondage is very much about fantasy, so...

    ***

    I think its a bit disingenuous to suppose that there isn't, or shouldn't be a sexual component read into the first cover. Yes, she's using her milky breast as a milky breast. But a breast is also a sexual signal and its a mistake to imagine otherwise. Thus, in our culture at least, woman who nurse publicly usually do cover up for modesty's sake, and polite folk who see them make a point of not staring.

    But this is brazen display. She is not gazing tenderly at her precious nursing child. She's making a show of it. This is a woman looking out at the world, taking on the greater world and not the solipsism of a mother turned inward to the privacy of her small world of mother and child. She is telling the (presumed heterosexual male reader), "You'd like some of this, wouldn't you."

    The fact that it is drawn by a woman doesn't change this message. I'm not offended by it, but I refuse to think that its something other than what it is.
  • Lets put it in a contemporary context. If you were to see a woman nursing in an airport, you would probably expect to see her seated in some quiet location, with the baby and herself at least partially covered, and her primary attention on the task at hand.

    You would be surprised to find her standing in a busy area, as exposed as this woman is, letting the kid do its thing while she took a business call.
  • The second two covers are more honest about their sexual pretensions. They're bondage art, hiding as fantasy, but bondage is very much about fantasy, so...

    ***

    I think its a bit disingenuous to suppose that there isn't, or shouldn't be a sexual component read into the first cover. Yes, she's using her milky breast as a milky breast. But a breast is also a sexual signal and its a mistake to imagine otherwise. Thus, in our culture at least, woman who nurse publicly usually do cover up for modesty's sake, and polite folk who see them make a point of not staring.

    But this is brazen display. She is not gazing tenderly at her precious nursing child. She's making a show of it. This is a woman looking out at the world, taking on the greater world and not the solipsism of a mother turned inward to the privacy of her small world of mother and child. She is telling the (presumed heterosexual male reader), "You'd like some of this, wouldn't you."

    The fact that it is drawn by a woman doesn't change this message. I'm not offended by it, but I refuse to think that its something other than what it is.
    On the other hand...

    I didn't notice that she was breatfeeding until it was pointed out and, judging by the tweety machine, wasn't the only one. I disagree that is intended to be sexual or hot. You can see it that way, but it's not a fact.
  • She is telling the (presumed heterosexual male reader), "You'd like some of this, wouldn't you." 
    I can't agree with that. Take this image:
    image

    The women are A) not covered up and B) not focused on their children, instead, occupied by conversation (ie. the world).  I don't see any sexual connotation in this image, nor in the illustration of the woman breastfeeding above.  It'd be the same as saying a picture of a man urinating should be seen as sexual, because a penis is also a sexual signal.  I think the intent or use of the object makes something sexual, not the object itself.  For example:

    image

    vs.

    image

    It's not the school uniform that's sexy, but how it's presented.

    But, you know, different mileage and all that.


  • I didn't even notice she was breast-feeding until someone pointed it out, and I've seen that piece a bunch of times.

    You can barely see her boob. You can't even see her cleavage, which puts her one-up on most portrayals of women in comics. The only thing I find questionable about it is her expression — it's a weirdly "Voguing" expression that looks out of place to me considering what she's doing. I don't agree with @marvinmann's read of the intention of the piece — honestly Marv, I think you're reading a lot into it — and I don't personally find it offensive (especially compared to so much other comics art). But now that I recognize the woman's breastfeeding, her expression does make me mildly uncomfortable, just for how out-of-place it seems to me. 
  • You know, there's actually potential that it was never intended to be a breastfeeding baby, but just the way she's carrying the child and a low cut shirt...

  • edited January 2012
    I didn't notice it either, when I first saw this image days ago. (And for the record, I do appreciate breasts as more than just milk dispensers.)
  • It should be added, also, that based on what I've heard about the book so far, breastfeeding in public as a brazen act of defiance would be completely in line with the character.
  • Well, that got conversation going :)

    I went to the blog and left a restatement of my position there.
    Umm, a couple of responses:

    Shawn, I don't put a conversation between intimate friends on quite the same level as the look on the illustrated woman's face, but obviously, at least one of these woman finds no need to cover. And frankly, I find her a good deal hotter than the Asian schoolgirls (but schoolgirl attire isn't much of a fetish for me). I agree that the middle image is intended to be sexualized.

    Brandon, it isn't the amount of breast that's shown, its the attitude with which she conducts the activity (something most 'erotic" artists don't necessarily get. They show all of the naughty bits and it may as well be fish).

    "But, now that I
    recognize the woman's breastfeeding, her expression does make me
    mildly uncomfortable, just for how out-of-place it seems to me."
     

    I think that you are starting to recognize just what I'm seeing.

    Jason, (and others who didn't immediately notice the breastfeeding). Did you see her intended as a sexually hot woman?

    Eric, an interesting point. I haven't followed this series, but you may be on to something.

    As I say, I'm not offended either. I often point out where I see sex in art (and get this kind of pushback) because I think its enormously valuable to be able to read art in this way, and use it if you intend to.
  • Yeah, I guess the first illustration can be read as a come hither glance.  But the breastfeeding negated that for me, so there you go.  Just how I'm wired I guess, lol!
  • Well there you go Shawn. Its a valid response.

    But if my observations (or note Brandon whom I quote above) make real the possibility of it being seen as otherwise, then that knowledge can provide greater control in determining just what your art will express.


  • Neither here, nor at Dave's blog (where trolls have been taking dumps)
    have I heard anyone suggest that breastfeeding, even in public, is or
    should be offensive. Just the opposite. But that's real life and this is
    art. Art is contrived, constructed to create effects, and everything that goes into it is fair game to be analyzed as to intent, even when effects are accidental.

    Very often, "it's realistic" simply isn't enough. An example; in my wife's book club, they read a book (I don't recall what) wherein one of the secondary characters is described as gay. This character apparently is not in a relationship, and his sexual preferences had no impact on anything in the story. This seemed to satisfy some of the women in the group, "Its realistic." and indeed it was. But this is art, and if this character's sexual orientation has no bearing on anything else in the book, why bother to mention it? It was one of several things that left my wife with the feeling that the author lacked control over his materials.

    Eric's observation that what I termed this woman's "brazen display" may be very much in keeping with the intent of the authors as to her character, suggests that it was an intended element of this illustration.
  • edited January 2012
    My initial reaction on seeing this image was to be impressed that a book on the cover of Previews featured a woman drawn that realistically and non-provocatively (i.e. wearing a coat, holding a baby, bare upper chest but no boobs hanging out).  I looked to see who'd drawn it and noticed it was a woman, and with that mystery solved, I didn't give it a second look or a second thought... which is how I missed that the baby was nursing. So I guess the short answer to your question is that I saw her intrinsic hotness as deliberately downplayed. In another medium I might read it differently, but in the context of comics, this drawing counts as "modest".
  • I think @ShawnRichison just dared me to post photos of me urinating.
  • Fiona Staples certainly didn't indulge in the done to death brokeback pose :)

    It seems to me a subtle enough portrayal, and if Eric's notes are correct, very appropriate to the character. I find that sexier than either of the two Dorman images.
  • @pjperez I thought that was a standing dare. I've been waiting for you to man up...
  • @Marvinmann I think the real problem I have with Dorman's position, is that he doesn't really have one.  it's almost like he thought, "I'm going to start a controversy, to get hits on my blog".  He says he's offended by the image, but why?  He comes out later and says he's not offended by breastfeeding, nor nudity.  He says he wanted to show this all-ages book to his kids, but then realizes belatedly that it's an adult themed book (the preview pages have a birth, a newborn and the f-bomb and the word "shitting"), and never really comes around to saying what it is that offends him.  I mean, I'm offended that I can't show most mainstream Super-Hero books to my little nieces and nephews, with all the raping, fridging, headshots, neck snaps and decapitations, (and these are characters ROUTINELY marketed to kids in other media!), but that doesn't change the industry...  but take a regular, natural thing like breastfeeding, that you might see on the street, and then get all offended about it?  Come on.  Maybe if he'd said, as you have, look, I'm not offended by it, but it reads as sexual to me, then he'd have a point... but to get all up in arms about it, but not REALLY say why?  Seems a little suspicious...
  • "In another medium I might read it differently, but in the context of comics, this drawing counts as "modest"."

  • You know at times like this I honestly don't understand you Americans and the things you rail against. 
  • My sense is that he read an article and took it that the book was aimed at children, and took the (very common) attitude that the image was inappropriate for that intended audience. It may be that he was responding to (what I perceive) as a sexualized representation without recognizing it as such. I feel sort of sorry for him that he has had to suffer through multiple lectures on how natural it all is, long after he agreed with that. And he willingly stood corrected as to the intended audience. So fault him for jumping the gun without doing more research. It happens all of the time. The point of a blog like that is to draw eyeballs, so I don't fault him there.
  • I think a whole bunch of people hereabouts would agree with you there, Mario.
  • You know at times like this I honestly don't understand you Americans and the things you rail against. 
    It's not easy being Amurrikin sometimes.
Sign In or Register to comment.

Debug Trace

Notice
The addon in /plugins/AboutMe has 1 issue(s).

#0 [internal function]: gdn_ErrorHandler(1024, 'The addon in /p...', '/home/steve55/p...', 795, Array)
#1 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(795): trigger_error('The addon in /p...', 1024)
#2 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(829): Vanilla\Addon->triggerIssues()
#3 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/cache/addon.php(1582): Vanilla\Addon::__set_state(Array)
#4 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(319): require('/home/steve55/p...')
#5 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(740): Vanilla\AddonManager->ensureMultiCache()
#6 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1094): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupAddon('stubcontent')
#7 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1074): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupByType('stubcontent', 'addon')
#8 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(247): Vanilla\AddonManager->startAddonsByKey(Array, 'addon')
#9 [internal function]: {closure}(Object(Garden\Container\Container), Object(Gdn_Configuration), Object(Vanilla\AddonManager), Object(Garden\EventManager), Object(Gdn_Request))
#10 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/vendor/vanilla/garden-container/src/Container.php(723): call_user_func_array(Object(Closure), Array)
#11 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(308): Garden\Container\Container->call(Object(Closure))
#12 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/index.php(27): require_once('/home/steve55/p...')
#13 {main}
Notice
The addon key must match it's subdirectory name (about me vs. AboutMe).

#0 [internal function]: gdn_ErrorHandler(1024, 'The addon key m...', '/home/steve55/p...', 797, Array)
#1 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(797): trigger_error('The addon key m...', 1024)
#2 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(829): Vanilla\Addon->triggerIssues()
#3 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/cache/addon.php(1582): Vanilla\Addon::__set_state(Array)
#4 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(319): require('/home/steve55/p...')
#5 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(740): Vanilla\AddonManager->ensureMultiCache()
#6 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1094): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupAddon('stubcontent')
#7 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1074): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupByType('stubcontent', 'addon')
#8 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(247): Vanilla\AddonManager->startAddonsByKey(Array, 'addon')
#9 [internal function]: {closure}(Object(Garden\Container\Container), Object(Gdn_Configuration), Object(Vanilla\AddonManager), Object(Garden\EventManager), Object(Gdn_Request))
#10 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/vendor/vanilla/garden-container/src/Container.php(723): call_user_func_array(Object(Closure), Array)
#11 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(308): Garden\Container\Container->call(Object(Closure))
#12 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/index.php(27): require_once('/home/steve55/p...')
#13 {main}
Notice
The addon in /plugins/Emotify has 1 issue(s).

#0 [internal function]: gdn_ErrorHandler(1024, 'The addon in /p...', '/home/steve55/p...', 795, Array)
#1 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(795): trigger_error('The addon in /p...', 1024)
#2 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(829): Vanilla\Addon->triggerIssues()
#3 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/cache/addon.php(1806): Vanilla\Addon::__set_state(Array)
#4 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(319): require('/home/steve55/p...')
#5 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(740): Vanilla\AddonManager->ensureMultiCache()
#6 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1094): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupAddon('stubcontent')
#7 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1074): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupByType('stubcontent', 'addon')
#8 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(247): Vanilla\AddonManager->startAddonsByKey(Array, 'addon')
#9 [internal function]: {closure}(Object(Garden\Container\Container), Object(Gdn_Configuration), Object(Vanilla\AddonManager), Object(Garden\EventManager), Object(Gdn_Request))
#10 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/vendor/vanilla/garden-container/src/Container.php(723): call_user_func_array(Object(Closure), Array)
#11 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(308): Garden\Container\Container->call(Object(Closure))
#12 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/index.php(27): require_once('/home/steve55/p...')
#13 {main}
Notice
The addon should have at most one plugin class (EmotifyPlugin, EmotifyPlugin).

#0 [internal function]: gdn_ErrorHandler(1024, 'The addon shoul...', '/home/steve55/p...', 797, Array)
#1 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(797): trigger_error('The addon shoul...', 1024)
#2 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/Addon.php(829): Vanilla\Addon->triggerIssues()
#3 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/cache/addon.php(1806): Vanilla\Addon::__set_state(Array)
#4 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(319): require('/home/steve55/p...')
#5 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(740): Vanilla\AddonManager->ensureMultiCache()
#6 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1094): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupAddon('stubcontent')
#7 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1074): Vanilla\AddonManager->lookupByType('stubcontent', 'addon')
#8 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(247): Vanilla\AddonManager->startAddonsByKey(Array, 'addon')
#9 [internal function]: {closure}(Object(Garden\Container\Container), Object(Gdn_Configuration), Object(Vanilla\AddonManager), Object(Garden\EventManager), Object(Gdn_Request))
#10 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/vendor/vanilla/garden-container/src/Container.php(723): call_user_func_array(Object(Closure), Array)
#11 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(308): Garden\Container\Container->call(Object(Closure))
#12 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/index.php(27): require_once('/home/steve55/p...')
#13 {main}
Notice
The addon with key GoogleSignIn could not be found and will not be started.

#0 [internal function]: gdn_ErrorHandler(1024, 'The addon with ...', '/home/steve55/p...', 1076, Array)
#1 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1076): trigger_error('The addon with ...')
#2 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(247): Vanilla\AddonManager->startAddonsByKey(Array, 'addon')
#3 [internal function]: {closure}(Object(Garden\Container\Container), Object(Gdn_Configuration), Object(Vanilla\AddonManager), Object(Garden\EventManager), Object(Gdn_Request))
#4 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/vendor/vanilla/garden-container/src/Container.php(723): call_user_func_array(Object(Closure), Array)
#5 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(308): Garden\Container\Container->call(Object(Closure))
#6 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/index.php(27): require_once('/home/steve55/p...')
#7 {main}
Notice
The locale with key SequentialWorkshop could not be found and will not be started.

#0 [internal function]: gdn_ErrorHandler(1024, 'The locale with...', '/home/steve55/p...', 1076, Array)
#1 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1076): trigger_error('The locale with...')
#2 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(249): Vanilla\AddonManager->startAddonsByKey(Array, 'locale')
#3 [internal function]: {closure}(Object(Garden\Container\Container), Object(Gdn_Configuration), Object(Vanilla\AddonManager), Object(Garden\EventManager), Object(Gdn_Request))
#4 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/vendor/vanilla/garden-container/src/Container.php(723): call_user_func_array(Object(Closure), Array)
#5 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(308): Garden\Container\Container->call(Object(Closure))
#6 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/index.php(27): require_once('/home/steve55/p...')
#7 {main}
Notice
The locale with key SQWSHP could not be found and will not be started.

#0 [internal function]: gdn_ErrorHandler(1024, 'The locale with...', '/home/steve55/p...', 1076, Array)
#1 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/library/Vanilla/AddonManager.php(1076): trigger_error('The locale with...')
#2 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(249): Vanilla\AddonManager->startAddonsByKey(Array, 'locale')
#3 [internal function]: {closure}(Object(Garden\Container\Container), Object(Gdn_Configuration), Object(Vanilla\AddonManager), Object(Garden\EventManager), Object(Gdn_Request))
#4 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/vendor/vanilla/garden-container/src/Container.php(723): call_user_func_array(Object(Closure), Array)
#5 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/bootstrap.php(308): Garden\Container\Container->call(Object(Closure))
#6 /home/steve55/public_html/sequentialworkshop.com/forum/index.php(27): require_once('/home/steve55/p...')
#7 {main}