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Anne Jerslev is Professor II at the Department of Media and Communication, and Professor in Film and Media Studies at the Department of Media, Cognition and Communication, University of Copenhagen.
Anne Jerslev is internationally recognized as one of the leading researchers within Film, TV and Popular Culture. Jerslev has broad academic interests, has participated in several research cooperation projects in the Nordic countries and published many books and articles within the area of Film, TV and Media Culture.
For more information and list of publications, please see Anne Jerslev’s profile at the University of Copenhagen.
Negotiating the persona: gendered paradoxes of ageing female celebrity – Madonna at the Met Gala 2016.
Madonna is often criticized by the media and other celebrities for not acting her age. Conversely, she is discussed in many scholarly articles as an artist who deliberately opposes “the standards of chronological decorum” and who puts “on display the contradictions of a culture” which glorifies youthfulness. Here, I use studies of female ageing, visibility and the media to consider the concept of the persona in relation to time and change. The key note considers how ageing female celebrity persona is negotiated by what Mary Russo has called “the scandal of anachronism” and how “not acting one’s age, for instance, is not only inappropriate, that is not in accordance with prescribed age norms, but dangerous, exposing the female subject, especially, to ridicule, contempt, pity, and scorn”. After Madonna’s appearance at the Met Gala 2016, the fashion and celebrity press that judged her outfit as scandalous and Joan Collins claimed that Madonna’s children might even be bullied. Madonna was unapologetic. Rhetorically, an apology is based on acceptance and admittance of guilt/responsibility; but Madonna framed her self-exposure within a discourse of gender politics and ageism. The question is, what can we learn about aging female persona from such examples of shame and ridicule of older women?