Just what Latinas needed: pictures of culos as we sip our morning cafe con leche. Ugh.... this is the kind of project that makes me sick. Don't get me wrong-- I am not hating on the beautiful women photographed in this forthcoming coffee table book nor am I being a prude about the showcasing of the gorgeous female form. Not at all... My issue with the the soon to be published book not so elegantly titled, "Culo" by music guy Jimmy Iovine and shutterbug Raphael Mazzucco is that it's more of the same-- the objectification of women.
As women continue to fight to be valued for more than just our pretty faces and nice asses, this kind of project sets us back. I see it as another put down to females... you know, just in case we get too haughty with the fact that we are going to university at higher rates then men, its a reminder to be easy with all that brain power. What the project's underlying message says to educated Latinas and really all females, is that no matter how intelligent we are, we are still reduced to being just a nice chunk meat. The proverbial, shut up and show some ass...continues. Ugh... This message is dangerous and it takes us to slippery slope territory and it's not just for women, but for men, those who love us and those who admire us for more than our physical beauty. It simply mucks up the way in which men see women, particularly African American and Latino men and they way Latinas and African American females see themselves/ourselves.
In so many industries we continue to be defined not by the smarts we bring to the table but by how big our asses are. What year are we in in like, 1950? For my female friends who work in media, fashion and especially, the music business, this is the kind of project that makes it a little more challenging to sit across a table and try to be taken seriously. Their voices get a little dimmer because the men in the room, encouraged by a music heavy hitter Iovine, refuse to hear what they got to say. It's a reminder that women in that world -- and other industries -- are just there to make the room look good and smell pretty. For smart women who love music and have a lot of intelligent things to add to it, the room just got a little stuffier.
I also wished that the dudes who created this joke of a book would have not used a Spanish word-- culo, which we know literally means butt hole because I have a nagging feeling that it might book may be code for Latina butts.