The creator of the blog Selfies at Funerals declares victory and ends the project after Danish Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt gets British Prime Minister David Cameron and U.S. President Barack Obama to pose alongside her in the selfie she made at the Nelson Mandela memorial service.
AND: There's a strange amount of talk about Michelle Obama's look of seeming disapproval (caught not in the selfie but in the photograph of the selfie getting taken). At Salon, Roxane Gay collects and reacts to the reactions to the First Lady's reaction.
More than anything, the response to these latest images of Michelle Obama speaks volumes about the expectations placed on black women in the public eye and how a black women’s default emotional state is perceived as angry. The black woman is ever at the ready to aggressively defend her territory. She is making her disapproval known. She never gets to simply be...But none of the responses Gay quotes refer to race or talk about Michelle Obama as anything other than one individual reacting to one particular thing on one occasion. But Gay seems so sure that it's those other people who are failing to perceive Michelle Obama as an individual: "On and on the punditry goes, ascribing very specific, historically racialized narratives to what Michelle Obama is thinking and feeling in one candid moment."
Now, it's not just the selfie. At The Daily News, there's a whole string of photos showing Michelle looking grouchy while Obama seems to be enjoying his interactions with the pretty Danish Prime Minister. But still, there is no reference to race. The closest reference to race is at the rather scurrilous website Gawker:
[T]here is a new sexy spy prime minister in town... and she is maybe kind of pretty if you are into “tall” and “blonde” and “pretty.” You know who does not seem to be that into “tall” and “blonde” and “pretty”? Michelle Obama, that is who! That is some side-eye not seen since the one time John Boehner grabbed her ass at lunch and slurred something about shayna tushies before falling face-first into his organic grassfedI had to go to the "that one time" link to see what that John Boehner incident was and was highly amused to see that Michelle Obama reacted to John Boehner with exactly the look look I described in the previous post as the best response to someone who makes a sexist remark in a social situation.
triple martinilobster bisque.