Tuesday, March 19, 2013

What rock have I been under?

I heard today, for the very first time in my life, about something called a Bechdel test.
I think my lesbian card is under threat of revocation, certainly my feminist card has been revoked (and my spouse when she reads this will be SHOCKED that I didn't know this).
In case you are wondering also, and we have been hanging together under rocks, this is the Bechdel test...
It is used to identify gender bias.
What? you ask?

Basically it asks people who go to a movie to look for three things:

Number 1. Are there two FEMALE characters in this movie whose name you know by the time the show is over?
Number 2. Do these two females ever talk to one another?
and finally,
Number 3. DO they talk about any topic other than talking about a man or men.

That's it. If the answer is yes to ALL three questions than your movie has passed the Bechdel test.

It's a pretty skimpy test if you ask me. I thought, for real? I mean the topic of the movie is not ever asked, it could still be a pretty horribly gender biased movie even if it meets these criteria, but since I didn't make up the test I'll follow the rules.

Only ELEVEN, 11, ten plus one, 100-89, ELEVEN percent of movies that have been made in Hollywood pass this test.


Since the Bechdel test can also be applied to other media, I am going to start looking in the books I read to see if I can answer these questions. I'll let you know how it turns out.


Teena in Toronto said...

Never heard of it.

JCB said...

yeah I heard of it for the first time when I posted this. I have been looking for it in books I am reading. It's an interesting test for sure.