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Vagina on TV

2002-02-19 23:43:31+00 by Dan Lyke 7 comments

The Chronicle has a great essay on censoring "vagina" on morning TV, apparently someone pitching the Vagina Monologues on the San Francisco's KTVU morning show was told not to use the word.

"Language is so powerful," said Elizabeth Bachen, an assistant professor of psychology at Mills College[Wiki]. "Feeling comfortable with the word could very well translate into feeling comfortable with your body. How can we talk about what gives us pleasure if we can't even say the word?"

[ related topics: Sexual Culture Psychology, Psychiatry and Personality Bay Area Television California Culture ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2002-02-20 01:32:56+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

And as a correlary (sp?); how can we teach people what is bad or inappropriate if we can't use the word?

Next week's Boston Public episode is going to deal with "the word that should never be spoken, and that people should be fired for even uttering". (The strong implication seems to be that the word is "nigger".) Should be an interesting show.

As for the Vagina Monologues; up here in Seattle we had a great commercial that made fun of people's discomfort with the word (which is part of the reason behind the title anyway, isn't it?) "Wait a minute... You mean you can't say the word 'Vagina'?"

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:27+00 by: Shawn

And here it is - the nutshell, in a single sentence:

"Children might ask what it means."

Heaven forbid!

The full measure of the stupidity of a society - in six brief words.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:28+00 by: meuon

Well even Debbie went, with her Cuz Lisa. But she did not like to utter the word. She would not even tell me where she was going, I had to say it. ROFLMAO..

The world is way to uptight about the wrong things. We can show real people dying - guts being blown through the air, live, via satellite on the 6pm news while eating dinner, but we can't mention the proper names of parts of our body.

And to be fair, I think we should get to work on the male side of all of this, the "Penis Poems" or "Penis Prologues" or maybe even: "Penis Pantomimes".

A few tales of conquest, of frustrations.. of waking up with a woody at 3am... and all I can visualize is Robin Williams doing a comedy routine. :)

#Comment made: 2002-02-20 12:58:32+00 by: Larry Burton [edit history]

Penis haikus would be more appropriate.

You greet me each dawn.
I rejoice in your fullness,
Then piss you away.

I see a definate double standard here, though. Saying "Penis" on tv, even on the early morning shows, almost seems popular. It's almost like the word has become cutesy. I'm guessing the "Penis Haikus" would be picked up very quickly by all the morning shows if they were anywhere near as well done as the "Vagina Monologues".

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:28+00 by: Mars Saxman

A couple of Australian guys have been putting on a show called Puppetry of the Penis for a few years now. Is that close enough?


#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:29+00 by: Jerry Kindall

Up here in Seattle we had a great commercial that made fun of people's discomfort with the word

That commercial wasn't great, it was annoying as hell. Every time it came on I had to switch the station.

"The Vagina Monologues" is not something you have to buy a full minute of radio airtime to promote. Since the show is already notorious, a 5-second spot saying the title, the dates, and the number to call for tickets would have been just as effective, less annoying, and much cheaper. And it wouldn't give me time to switch away from your station.

#Comment made: 2002-02-21 05:35:29+00 by: Shawn

That commercial wasn't great, it was annoying as hell. Every time it came on I had to switch the station.

Hey, it was a commercial. Of course it was silly and stupid. But it was much better than having the word banned from the airwaves. Does anybody not change the station whenever any commercial comes on??