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Monday 16 August 2010

GUEST BLOGGER: Laury Louise Jeanneret

Laury Louise Jeanneret is a talented, UK-based writer who has started her own blog, http://aroomofonesown-llj.blogspot.com/.

We are old work buds and I was chuffed when she agreed to be a guest blogger for Josie's Juice. Her first post is a thought-provoking piece.

In praise of Katie and Jade

More and more lately I have become preoccupied by the chasm between rich and poor in this country. After three years living overseas, in a society that has no formal hierarchical class structure like the UK does, the disparity between Britain’s rich and poor seems even more resonant to me. But more than the mere crudeness of comparing people that can afford to shop in Waitrose to people that can only afford ASDA, I find myself left increasingly incensed by the attitudes towards class.

In a way, it doesn’t even come down to money anymore. It comes down to perceptions of worthiness. Never is this more apparent than with media phenomenons like Katie Price and Jade Goody. Here we have two working class girls, with no discernable talent at all, that went on to make an absolute fortune by documenting every inch of their lives, packaging it and selling it to the highest bidder.

Price invites derision because she appears morally ambiguous. A former glamour model, the papers are constantly full of pictures of her spilling out of bars half-cut. She is seen as a media whore, and perhaps in a way she is, I am certainly not saying that I approve of every aspect of how she chooses to live her life. But what I also don’t approve of is this snooty notion that she is somehow undeserving of her money because of it.

Katie Price is just an ordinary girl from Brighton, as far as I can tell she wasn’t especially gifted and was not born into any type of privilege, but she found a way to make a life for herself that didn’t involve working behind a checkout, or photocopying all day in an office. And she did that by showing her boobs to people. Without the option of ‘going to uni’, which the twittering middle classes would do well to remember is the stark reality for most young working class kids in Britain, she found another path. And it paid. It paid well.

As far as I am concerned Katie Price is a self-made woman and good luck to her, she would not be famous if no one wanted to buy pictures of her, so if we are going to hold her up as an example of all that is morally bankrupt in our society, perhaps we should also take a look at ourselves. Because we created the demand that she fulfils. If she is a media whore, then, as the consumers of her wares, that surely makes us her kerb-crawling punters.

Make sure you read part two of Laury's excellent piece, on Josie's Juice soon.

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