Today’s post is by Bonnie Norman, who analyzes speculative fiction works from a lesbian, feminist, and anti-racist perspective in order to foster discussion about the issues that plague SF and society in general. She can be found at her review blog, A Working Title, which also has links to her other writing pieces.
Twilight is the ultimate in deception. Posing as a love story between a girl and a boy, it’s really a rallying cry for codependence and misogynists.
The definition for codependency from Wikipedia:
“Symptoms of codependence may include controlling behavior, distrust, perfectionism, avoidance of feelings, problems with intimacy, excessive caretaking, hypervigilance, or physical illness related to stress. Codependence is often accompanied by clinical depression, as the codependent person succumbs to feelings of frustration or sadness over their inability to improve their situation.”
This definition describes the main relationship in Twilight almost word for word.
Today’s Anti-Twilight Week post is brought to you by The Naked Readhead. She writes about dating, relationships and other drivel on her aptly named website, The Naked Redhead. In her spare time, she enjoys telling other people what to do, strutting around pompously, and knitting. She lives in Columbus, OH with her boyfriend, two cats, and neurotic dog.
Oh lord, Twilight. I read the books—yes, I did—but that doesn’t mean that I don’t still feel icky about wasting two weeks of my life reading the novel equivalent of, “I love you more. No, I love YOU more. YOU hang up. No, YOU hang up. Did you hang up? I love YOU more.” Barf.
I, however, am not here to talk about the ridiculous, love-sick relationship the story entails, the over-exaggerated emotions that come from heavy petting in the name of celibacy, or the fact that the Cullen’s would be much more entertaining if they were true to their own natures (i.e. the killing of the humans and the drinking of the human blood). I won’t talk about the unhealthy message the books send to girls about the attractiveness of mumbling, poor posture and moody sighs. I won’t even talk about how Victorian morals are uplifted to the heights of gold-covered cancer cures, or how the thesaurus is Meyer’s preferred writing tool.
Let’s talk, instead, about how in the real world no vampire, wolf, human or otherwise would date Bella Swan long term. I don’t care how good her blood smells, she is the worst kind of literary romantic hero. Can you imagine if Jane Eyre had almost been hit by a truck because she was listening to her iPod and mooning over Rochester at the same time? I think not.
Without further ado…
ElitistGeek was good enough to be a part of Anti-Twilight Week. It just goes to show you that not every girl who reads Stephenie Meyer’s series swoons. Enjoy!
It’s funny how the first post of Anti-Twilight Week talks about how the series is viewed in the eyes of a male because I’m going to talk about the same thing—but in the eyes of a female.
As I read the books I was admittedly quite captivated by them; however, when I finished the series and took a step back and analyzed the Twilight Saga in its entirety, I was shockingly appalled. When you’re reading the novels, it’s easy to dismiss Edward’s behavior as actions of love rather than abuse or how he suppresses Bella’s independence because he is so adamant about her safety. That’s not even half of it, though, so let’s lay them out and take a closer look.
Let’s face it, Twilight was written for girls. Stephenie Meyer’s target demographic is the adolescent female, and while there are a fair number of boys out there for whom I weep nightly based on their love of Twilight, their numbers pale in comparison to the tweenie-bopper girls.
So I figure I’ll give you my take on the most “meh” aspects of the Twilight franchise and see if there I can provide any insight into why most of us boys just don’t get it.
The Twilight Saga: New Moon hits theaters on November 20th. In preparation for this momentous occasion, I am planning an Anti-Twilight Week for my blog. And I want you all to join in!
Do you have something to say about Bella Swan and Edward Cullen’s physically and emotionally abusive relationship? Do you want to speak out about the evils of complete and total interdependency? Does Stephenie Meyer’s abuse of the English language make you want to assault her with a grammar handbook? Is there just something about Meyer’s contribution to making vampires OMG AWESOME that rubs you the wrong way?
Then Professor Beej’s Anti-Twilight Week is your chance to sound off. If you have beef with Twilight, let the world know. And remember, Anti-Twilight Week is not limited to just the movies and books; if you are disgusted by merchandising or any other part of the sparkling vampire fad, it’s fair game.
All you have to do is prepare a 500-1200 word post and email me through my contact form, and we’ll hash out the details. Include any bio, by-line, and backlink you’d like me to include, and you’re set. It’s that easy!
So to get those creative juices flowing and kick off Anti-Twilight Week, enjoy this post about subversion in Twilight.
Not a writer? Not a problem! You can still do your part to prevent the spread of Twilight. You can share this post on Facebook or share it on Twitter to get the word out.
Anti-Twilight Week consists of the following posts:
The Twilight Saga: A Boy’s Perspective
A Girl’s Perspective on The Twilight Saga
Dear Twilight: No, YOU Hang Up
Don’t Touch that Book, or Why Twilight is NOT for Girls
Anti-Edward Cullen: A Treatise
Stephenie Meyer’s Writing is an Insult to Fanfic
Twilight: An Outsider’s Perspective
Image Courtesy of Mrs_Camui.