073 Media, Empathy and Harambe
Media is a powerful thing. It can create a new normal for us, or reinforce harmful stereotypes. As consumers, it’s important for us to demand better representation of different cultures, colors, genders and for animals in our mainstream media. The princesses also react to the killing of silverback gorilla Harambe’s at the Cincinnati Zoo.
In This Episode
After reading an article about a study that proved racial bias prevents empathy between people of different colors, Nichole got to thinking about how a lack of representation in movies and TV prevents people from finding empathy with each other, and also with animals. She also is fired up about the recent scandal around Paramount Pictures casting Scarlett Johansson as the lead in Ghost in the Shell, an anime series from Japan.
They talk about Hollywood’s tendency to whitewash movies, as well as the use of animals as expendable objects in media, and how we need to boycott and protest these hurtful, ridiculous practices.
We need to see people and animals shown in media in ways that increase empathy, and also just get us to see that we’re all the same: living beings who crave connection.
Links and Information
- China Just Said What the U.S. Never Has: Eat Less Meat (Grist)
- Agave Silk: A Cruelty Vegetable Silk Made from Cactus (Ecouterre)
- Animal Behavior Expert Says Silverback Gorilla Harambe Was Not Trying to Harm Defenseless Child (Daily Telegraph)
Mentioned in this Episode
- Racial Bias and the Ability to Feel Others’ Pain (Racism Review)
- Christopher Sebastian’s thoughts on zoos (Facebook)
- Christopher Sebastian on Ota Benga and zoos as prisons (Facebook)
- Awesome, insightful critical analysis of Star Wars – how it always boils down to two white dudes working out their feelings (The New Inquiry)
Responses to Paramount’s Casting of Scarlett Johansson as Major Motoko Kunasagi in Ghost in the Shell Remake