Wednesday, March 5, 2014

AR-EN: Television & Difficult Women

[A Notebook on Alyssa Rosenberg & Emily Nussbaum]    

In her article “Difficult Women,” Emily Nussbaum argues that the protagonists of Sex and the City were “odder birds by far,” but they were also “real and abstract, emotionally complex…women identified with them…but then became furious when they showed flaws.” Based on Nussabaum’s descriptions in the article, what did you think of those complex or “difficult” women characters (even if you were not familiar with the show)? Why?

8 comments:

Jacqueline C. said...

The "difficult women" characters seem to be women who can be related to but also have flaws. In a sense, it is contradicting. One moment, they are odd or different from the average woman, but in another instance, they are emotional like most females. This just goes to show that women are complex beings and only a woman really knows what goes on mentally, physically, and emotionally, making the characters relateable.

Ashya Ford said...

Personally, I am not familiar with these shows, but I can definitely see what Nussbaum is talking about. In her description of these characters, I think that these women modeled after real life women and they were very true to their character. When the writers had to include their flaws into their personalities, I think that it what turned some people off about the show because the very women they were idolizing for being just like them, weren't as perfect as they would have wished them to be. Despite them not being perfect, I still applaud the writers for capturing every part of a woman, even her flaws because they too, make her who she is.

Kiara Gay said...

I am familiar with the show, so I can agree that the characters of each woman shifted each season. But I believe that in order to capture the real complexity of the emotions and behavior of a woman. A person is never perfect, and as a human being we are dynamic creatures who are always constantly changing our views and behaviors as our beliefs change, so any show should have characters who evolve as time progresses, or else it is giving off the false portrayal that life is always the same.

Kayleigh E. said...

I am not familiar with the show, but from what I have heard, the characters in the show are iconic. Sex and the City is known all throughout the country. There has to be some substance in the characters for the show to be so popular. It seems the women show sexual empowerment that hadn't been on TV before. It is good that they characters had flaws though. No one in real is perfect.

Jenee B. said...

I thought that the women Nussbaum described were sometimes predictable, but at other times relatable. Most had stereotypical roles comparable to the roles on the "Golden Girls", but they were much more complex. I believe some women were upset when the characters made mistakes or showed flaws because most people are idealistic, and also it may remind them of how they themselves are flawed in similar ways.

Jacquelene G said...


I feel like these characters all came off as strong young women. Sometimes showing no compassion or real interest in finding true love/marriage. People could relate to them, because they did have different things they struggled with.
I feel the reason people, became angry when they let their issues get the best of them--such as when Samantha actually became venerable--was because they may have felt that there was no hope for them; being let down after they put these characters up on a pedestal just to make a decision that hurt them in the end.

Jac`quelene G.

Jasmine said...

I think these "difficult" women faced difficulties that real women face all of the time. I think the main problem women viewing these characters had was that they would make mistakes that seemed like they were obvious to avoid but in reality women make these obvious mistakes all of the time. In general women tend to act off of emotion which ends up getting us in a lot of trouble. When these characters would seem more like a real woman rather than their fierce characters viewers would get upset but the truth hurts. I myself don't like seeing these issues all of the time but the truth is that no one is perfect and even the strongest and most successful women have their issues.

Hilary Conrad said...

I have never seen the show, but in my opinion, all women are difficult. I think the show probably was relate able to most women at some point, no matter which way it was spun.