Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Stereotypes aren't all bad. No, really, hear me out. What I mean is that stereotypes are actually archetypes: a kind of mental shorthand for identifying characters and their purposes. And they've been around ever since some clever Ancient Greek said, "You know, rather than me telling you what happened, why don't I show you? Pretend I'm Alcibiades and this tree is Clytemnestra."
That was a helluva day in Athens, I'm telling you.
Where stereotypes become dangerous is when they package a value judgement with gender, ethnicity, sexuality or nationality. It's when a stereotype prevents you from seeing the individual. And those are the stereotypes that need to be challenged, and guess whose job that is?
Yep, it's ours.
And isn't that great news?
Your mission for the week: find a stereotype. Invert the hell out of it.