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< Back to question Are the Kardashians-Jenners feminists? Show more Show less

The Kardashian-Jenners have built an empire worth over a billion dollars around their name alone. While some argue their entrepreneurship is inspiring for young women, others point to their sexualization and fixation on appearance as evidence they are bad influences on young women. Are the Kardashian-Jenners empowering, feminist figures? Or do they demean all that feminism stands for?

Yes, the Kardashians are feminist Show more Show less

The Kardashians are wildly successful and promote the complete ownership of their own bodies without regards to societal taboos.
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The Kardashians have successful careers despite misogyny

Kim Kardashian managed to turn a revenge porn sex tape into a brilliant and insanely successful career, demonstrating how even in terribly mysogynist situations women can prevail.
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Proponents


The Argument

For better or worse, no one in the 21st century is unaware of the Kardashian clan. Kim’s journey has been witnessed by many; going from a 22-year-old girl who made appearances on Paris Hilton’s "The Simple Life", to the release of her sex tape, to finally the astute businesswoman, loving mother and wife we know her to be today. Despite the claims that reality shows like ‘Keeping Up with the Kardashians’ have no real basis to it, we find ourselves strangely attracted to the controversies they sometimes create.[1] It is no secret that in society women are sexualized more often than not, portrayed as sensuous and alluring. The Kardashians, being aware of this notion have utilized it to their advantage, establishing their empire on the principle that sex sells. While other women take offense to being objectified, this family has shown that nothing can truly affect a person unless they let it. As a result, the Kardashians have taken every insult and have turned them into strengths, allowing them to grow even more. According to Forbes, Kylie Jenner at the age of 21 became the youngest self-made billionaire, creating history.[2] In the field of cosmetics, Kylie’s brand is among the top-selling, a feat she achieved solely on the basis of merit, ambition and elbow grease. Being a woman who reached the very top in a male-dominated industry in the 21st century, she is a beacon for all those women who continue to persevere in the hope of getting what they’re due. Through their television show, "Keeping Up with the Kardashians", they have normalized different aspects of womanhood that are otherwise still considered as taboo to this very day. The fact that women also have sexual desires that they want to be fulfilled is just the tip of the iceberg. By opening the discussion on surrogacy, they have lifted the veil of blame and shame that has since ages covered women who are unable to bear children. Moreover, the idea that only perfection is acceptable on TV is thrown out the window when it comes to their show. The Kardashians show to the world their true selves, in the words of Oliver Cromwell, “warts and all”. The true reflection of their imperfections and flaws, has encouraged countless others to embrace themselves as they are, instead of constantly running behind an ideal they can never truly achieve. Through their lives, the Kardashians have influenced and empowered many men and women, ultimately, changing their lives for the better.

Counter arguments

The Kardashian empire, as stated in the argument, is founded on the idea of women being sexualized. Hence, actress Jameela Jamil accurately called them out as being “double agents of the patriarchy”.[3] At any given point of time, if they are criticized or tagged as anti-feminists, the family retorts, labelling these accusations as misogynistic. However, all the profits they reap originate from this very misogyny and moreover, they do not take any active steps to tackle the patriarchy that they apparently are the "victims" of. Each member of the Kardashian family has a social media following that runs into millions. The amount of influence they exert over their followers is immense. If, with such power, they utilize the notion of misogyny in ways that it only suit themselves, they are further entrenching and establishing absolute male dominion in society. This reveals them to be "pretend-feminists", a category that proves to be much more harmful than anti-feminists.

Premises

[P1] - The Kardashians have utilized women objectification to their advantage and founded their empire on this principle. [P2] - They have a deep understanding of the consumeristic nature of society. [P3] - They have normalized different women issues considered as taboo in the present day and age.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P1] - The Kardashians utilize women's objectification solely for their benefit, and at the cost of different women empowerment movements. [Rejecting P3] - They have not worked for the equality of women or the destruction of patriarchy in society.

References

  1. https://www.feministcurrent.com/2016/05/25/yes-hating-the-kardashians-is-misogynist/
  2. https://www.forbes.com/sites/natalierobehmed/2019/03/05/at-21-kylie-jenner-becomes-the-youngest-self-made-billionaire-ever/#7b011b102794
  3. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/entertainment/a22977687/jameela-jamil-kardashians-double-agents-patriarchy-interview/

This page was last edited on Wednesday, 9 Sep 2020 at 15:18 UTC

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