Much clucking behind television anchor desks follows the airing of popular internet footage of girl fights. After repeated displays of adolescent girls slapping each other, pulling hair, and ripping off clothes, news anchors wonder out loud about the reasons for their popularity among YouTube and other internet viewers.
It’s no big secret: This is a genre of pornography.
The occasional tough-girl fight on school grounds that one came across with flinching embarrassment is now captured by a video camera for the titillation of millions of sick viewers. The violence factor and the authenticity of the fight are the draws that pull viewers, at least according to the blurbs for the 64,200,000 links pulled up on a Google search for “girl fights videos.”
This genre reflects societal trends and how women are viewed in our post-feminist culture. It’s the logical conclusion of the sexual revolution officially announced in the ironically titled “Summer of Love” forty years ago. The girl fights dramatize the reality behind “free love”; they display the insecurity, competitiveness, and hostility that the sexual revolution has wrought.
The recent trend began with girls kissing each other, as they do in Girls Gone Wild videos—a display made more commonplace with the infamous Madonna-Britney Spears staged tongue tango in 2003.
Both Madonna and Britney Spears, at the same time, have provided the material for much “scholarship” for feminist professors, who have made careers of analyzing such displays of assertive sexuality as evidence of women’s “empowerment.”
As women became more sexually “free,” they had to up the ante to attract men, hence girl fights over men (at least in men’s imaginations). The young man on a college campus today is surrounded by young women, often dressed provocatively. He has his pick because today nearly two-thirds of undergraduates are female.