Members of society take one look at the Kardashian sisters and denounce the clan for being superficial, useless and unintelligent. However, it is wrong to hate the Kardashians from the outside looking in.
Anyone who hates someone because “they’re stupid” is wrong.
Disliking the Kardashians does not suggest some new, profound feminist theory. It does not prove we as women are rising above the supposed vanity of the famous family. Instead, it is only an echo of the constantly resounding voice of white, male supremacy in our society today.
It is not women who despise the Kardashians.
Women are likely to be envious of the Kardashians because they represent who we would all like to be: beautiful, successful businesswomen who are wealthy because of their own work. It is the men in our society who dislike the Kardashian family because they represent an immense threat to the patriarchy.
The Kardashians are females who males find sexually attractive, and who are simultaneously prosperous in the business world. The Kardashian combination of brains and beauty makes men extremely uncomfortable. They are the ultimate threat, but by deeming them dumb and depthless, society directs us to believe the Kardashians possess no intelligence and are therefore simply objects of ridicule.
This could not be more incorrect.
“The Kardashians, particularly Kim, represent what’s right with America. Kim Kardashian is a bona fide, true and real entrepreneur. Her many businesses have created job opportunities, wealth and entertainment for millions of people,” wrote Gene Marks of The Huffington Post.
Many people believe that Kim’s sex tape with Ray-J was the golden ticket to the Kardashian’s fame, and while this undoubtedly played a factor, the family—Kim specifically—was hard at work long before the video scandal.
In the early 2000s, Kim started a closet organization business. Her clients included celebrities such as Paris Hilton, Nicole Richie and Serena Williams. Kim would clean out these iconic closets and then sell the unwanted items on eBay, generating hefty profits. Soon after the start of her eBay business endeavor, Kim and her sisters ventured into the fashion world, and opened their first successful designer clothing store, Dash, in Calabasas. The family’s reality show took off around the same time, and the rest is American history.
Throughout the years, the Kardashians have evolved into businesswomen who are also LGBTQIA activists and body-positive spokespeople. They also represent a complicated American family that still manages to find love and acceptance in the midst of divorce, gender-transition and other familial issues.
All of this makes the Kardashians a clan patriarchal society would have us turn on. They are a sexual, beautiful, non-traditional family and are ultimately a group of women who have risen beyond the definition of “womanhood” our culture is comfortable with.
The Kardashians have gone above and beyond, and continue to rise, making them targets because they are anomalies to the typical picture of “American success.” They are not the tall, white man in a black suit, but instead are classy, curvy, Armenian women dressed in Yeezy’s latest looks, joking about sex unapologetically as they rake in millions.
The Kardashians are continuously re-defining what it means to be successful in the entrepreneurial world. Instead of hating them for their celebrity status, we ought to examine the myriad of things the Kardashians have done right—because the list is endless.
– Bridgett Reneau is a psychology junior