Anne of Green Gables is now a blond Playboy centerfold

(59 Posts)
StewieGriffinsMom Thu 07-Feb-13 10:35:35

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ImNotDrunkIJustCantType Thu 07-Feb-13 10:36:09

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MN044 Thu 07-Feb-13 10:38:03

A Playboy centrefold? Hardly. I don't like the cover particularly but she's hardly naked. I don't know where you get the sex toy reference from either??

She was a redhead! Wasn't there a storyline that she dyed her hair?

AbigailAdams Thu 07-Feb-13 10:41:01

Really you can't see anything sexualised about the pose at all? Can you imagine a man posing like that?

I am with you SGM. Anne of Green Gables was one of my favourite books growing up. Not like the character at all.

MN044 Thu 07-Feb-13 10:42:32

It's a dreadful cover. But I do think you're making this worse than it is. There's nothing remotely Playboy about it. I'm more hmm that she's blonde

HecateWhoopass Thu 07-Feb-13 10:48:21

Yes, it is a sexy pose. It's certainly not a kid standing in a field or in front of a house with a white picket fence, is it? I wonder why they chose to do that and why change her hair colour.

StewieGriffinsMom Thu 07-Feb-13 10:48:58

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pictish Thu 07-Feb-13 10:49:59

She's blonde, and that's what is wrong! Anne is a redhead!

TunipTheVegedude Thu 07-Feb-13 10:50:38

The hand behind the head is a classic 50s pose. It's probably 50s pin-up more than Playboy centrefold but the point is it's a sexualised pose rather than one that has anything to do with the character.

TunipTheVegedude Thu 07-Feb-13 10:50:59

oops, meant to say classic sexy pose

pictish Thu 07-Feb-13 10:53:08

I loved the Anne of Green Gables books as a kid, and I always remember watching the televised series starring Megan Follows at christmas time aged about 14 or so?
It's a guff cover.

raininginbaltimore Thu 07-Feb-13 10:56:22

As a ginger I am offended. When I was bullied as a chil for being a red head I took solace in those books. Gingerism.

I don't like the pose either, but I am more upset by the blonde hair.

MooncupGoddess Thu 07-Feb-13 10:57:09

That is wrong on so many levels. Apart from anything else, the Anne books are set in the late 19th century. I can't find a picture on line of my paperback edition (probably 1980s?) but it's a nice illustration that gets Anne about right.

StewieGriffinsMom Thu 07-Feb-13 10:58:45

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FastidiaBlueberry Thu 07-Feb-13 12:04:17

Who is the publisher?

This really is pernicious and a brilliant example of porn culture.

Any child buying this book is receiving the message that being a girl means being sexy before being anything else. Even if the words in the book say something completely different and don't even talk about the need to be fuckable, the subliminal message is that even when you're busy doing other stuff, sexy is where it's at. If this goes on, it will almost be impossible to find pictures of female humans which don't emphasise their fuckability above every other aspect of them. Are we to look forward to a representation of Hermione Granger suggestively holding her wand in her mouth, or near her arse or something, a la 50 shades? WTF?

Who the fuck thought it was a good idea, is the publishing house full of child-molesters or something?

I mean seriously, what possesses an otherwise normal person, to imagine that the best representation of an 11 year old red-haired girl with freckles (something the book is very specific about) is a sexualised picture of a teenager? There's something actually quite sinister about this, what is wrong with the adults who authorised this cover? I really do think they should be forced to make a statement about why they felt it was appropriate to pornify the image of a child on a book whose target market is female children. It's beyond disgusting, it's actually amazing - as if peadophiles are working in the office and deciding the artwork and the normal adults there are accepting the paedophile view of the world, that every child is a potential fuck.

And of course, we're all going to be told that we're overreacting, it's only a picture and it's fine for 8 year old girls to be brainwashed in this way.


AbigailAdams Thu 07-Feb-13 12:04:41

Yes I saw your blog post SGM. It was good!

<btw I did another blog post for the other blog last night. Hope you don't mind. I seem to be a little obsessed with sandwiches atm confused>

It is a rubbish cover makes me think of 'Jackie' or teen romance novels, not Playboy though, It is wrong on many levels and is totally not appropriare or relevant to the books.

No need to overplay the issue though it is not a raunchy picture just what some very unimaginative publisher thinks will appeal to a teen girl market. Depressing.

FloatyBeatie Thu 07-Feb-13 12:17:19

It is an awful cover. Not quite Playboy, but, yes, a pornified ideal of appearance which strips away the charm and individuality of a real young woman in place of something anonymous and pernicious.

Reminds me of a webpage that the UK blood donation service emailed me as part of its campaign to get lots of new donors. There was a photo there of several young men and women, and all of the females had those masses of blond hair, thick make up, and "sultry" open-mouthed smiles -- as well as the kind of pose that thrusts the breasts forward slightly. Again, not really Playboy but definitely employing lots of porny tropes.

The very fact that it wasn't quite Playboy but had been softened into something wholesome and girl-next-door was part of what was distasteful -- a kind of final seal on the transition of porny tropes into the whole of life. Same with this Anne of GG cover, I think.

StewieGriffinsMom Thu 07-Feb-13 12:18:04

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Hullygully Thu 07-Feb-13 14:23:07

They must have thought it was an image that would sell the book as girls want to look like Busty Blondes. Depressing.

Anne was a strong person and of course a redhead. It would have been much more effective to have a redheaded female staring directly at the potential reader.

Those marketing men that came up with that obviously live in a prewar bubble of revoltingness.

Hullygully Thu 07-Feb-13 14:25:14

I've had another look since this morning. Actually she looks like a sexy C&W singer who stands by her man.

Egusta Thu 07-Feb-13 14:27:50

What fastidia said at 12.04.

ohmeohmy Thu 07-Feb-13 14:58:31

It's fostering attitudes like [[,31061/ this]]

ohmeohmy Thu 07-Feb-13 14:58:53
weegiemum Thu 07-Feb-13 15:03:52

Anne is a very strongly moral character, if you read the whole sereis from the first book to "Anne of Ingleside" where she's a mother of 7 (as she says "only 6 living" - as her first child dies after 12 hours). This is horribly offensive, especially referring to the first book when she's only just 16 at the end!

TunipTheVegedude Thu 07-Feb-13 15:04:24

I bet this is a bottom-of-the-range publisher that does cheap editions of out-of-copyright books, and they get their covers by getting someone in the office to google around for images that are in the public domain that they don't have to pay for, and there is no-one there who has read the book.

PretzelTime Thu 07-Feb-13 15:17:49

Ha! Nice Onion link.

The book cover thing is depressing. It's not the first time the makers of some kind of media have chosen to portray something incorrectly so it can be more sexist. It's like they they think, oh shit this thing is not sexist enough! We better do something about that!

Just look at any historical movies etc where women fulfill modern beauty standards and never do anything of note, unlike the important men.

CambridgeBlue Thu 07-Feb-13 15:26:37

That is wrong in so many ways - for a start have they even read it? Her red hair is what half the story is about (trying to dye it, Gilbert teasing her about it, Mrs Rachel saying it makes her look 'homely' so she's rude to her). And another big part of it is that she doesn't consider herself beautiful (and in fact probably isn't conventionally attractive until she gets older) so she'd hardly be the type to stand pouting at the camera with her chest pushed out (she's also very skinny so where are those curves supposed to have come from?)

How depressing that using a sexist, cliched and irrelevant image on the cover is seen as the only way of getting girls to read a classic book sad

TerrariaMum Thu 07-Feb-13 15:46:46

WTAF??!! Do people never read the books they get covers for?

There is so much wrong with that cover, I can't even...

Sexualised pose, plaid shirt, blonde hair?!!! Do the people who put this cover on have any idea WHEN the book is set?

BTW, SGM, your blog is ace. I may not always agree with everything you say, but I love how you say it.

StewieGriffinsMom Thu 07-Feb-13 16:23:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AlbertaCampion Thu 07-Feb-13 16:28:42

DEAR GOD Stewie - I thought you meant that Megan Follows had dyed her hair & posed for Playboy! My stomach was all a-plummet and I was too frightened to click the link.

I am relieved to discover that I was mistaken. But pretty horrified at that new cover, all the same.

drwitch Thu 07-Feb-13 16:46:55

can we think of similar inappropriate covers
how is this for a cover of a biography of emily davison

drwitch Thu 07-Feb-13 16:49:14
FairPhyllis Thu 07-Feb-13 16:49:50

It's not a proper publishing house. It looks like one of those self-publishing outfits - someone is just trying to make a buck out of the fact it's out of copyright, and has stuck a picture of a young woman on it without thinking/really knowing what the book is about.

I think it says more about some idiot's idea of what a default young woman looks like than a deliberate attempt to subvert the character - my guess is that they don't know the book at all and don't realise how inappropriate it is.

Of course I'm not saying it's not problematic that someone's idea of a young woman is a blonde pouty sexualised young thing.

Devora Thu 07-Feb-13 16:50:30

Anne of Green Gables was a role model for generations of girls who grew to learn that their lack of conventional 'beauty' was less important than their character, their relationships, their love of books.

This cover is seriously naff. It is a travesty of the book. And yes, it is a sexualised pose.

MooncupGoddess Thu 07-Feb-13 16:57:52

LOL drwitch. Am just imagining Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm in a catsuit.... possibly Jo March in a bikini...

drwitch Thu 07-Feb-13 17:20:54

or the velveteen rabbit as a bunny girl smile

colditz Thu 07-Feb-13 17:23:25

Not only was she a red head, she was skinny and eleven years old. She was a LITTLE GIRL. Not a blonde, curvy teenager.

PrivatelyPeaceful Thu 07-Feb-13 17:26:13

Fastidia, I couldn't agree more sadsad

StewieGriffinsMom Thu 07-Feb-13 18:31:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Alibabaandthe40nappies Thu 07-Feb-13 18:54:13

Dear God I'm horrified by that.

The whole thing about the book is that she doesn't look conventionally attractive.

The onion link was hilarious!

That book... anyone else immediately think of Dawson's Creek when they saw it? Which was of course was about oversexed teeangers who lived in a small town..

IThinkOfHappyWhenIThinkOfYou Thu 07-Feb-13 19:02:00

Can you imagine Marilla allowing her to wear that shirt?


FairPhyllis Thu 07-Feb-13 20:39:41

Well my point about the publisher is that it actually makes me less angry about it, in a way, because it means that the choice of picture hasn't gone through a marketing department in a publishing house. There hasn't been an involved commercial decision process to choose THAT photo: we are literally looking at someone operating out of their back bedroom slapping pictures on out-of-copyright books and hoping that someone will stumble on them in an Amazon search. So this actually makes me feel slightly better because it's about a dubiously well-read and slightly opportunistic individual buying into porn culture and hoping others will fall for it, rather than something systemic within a particular "real" publisher making them think it's a good commercial decision to choose a picture like that.

(pace the fact that publishing is not the most pro-feminist of professions anyway; and the fact that the individual contributes to a patriarchal system etc etc)

It's on Amazon because the self-publishing platform it's produced on is owned by Amazon and that's how it gets distributed. I doubt Amazon holds its self-publishers up to any standard of any kind of merit or appropiateness at all: artistic, literary etc. I guess it cares about whether the pictures and text are used legally, and that's about it, unfortunately.

dizzydixies Thu 07-Feb-13 20:43:22

No no no no no no no NO NO I am enraged and devastated all at once.

TunipTheVegedude Thu 07-Feb-13 20:47:28

FairPhyllis - exactly. It's still crappy but that's probably how it came about, not via people who had read the book sitting in meetings agreeing it was appropriate.

FairPhyllis Thu 07-Feb-13 21:03:27

Yes Tunip. I mean, the pic is ridiculous, but it's just so bad that I actually find it kind of funny now. I would be a LOT more worried and pissed off if it had been any kind of more institutionalised decision.

I looked on the self-publishing site and loads of people have tried to do the same thing with AOGG, with fairly mixed results on the cover art, but that is still the worst one.

I understand why it means a lot to people here (and I do adore the books) - I think I just tend to save the anger for egregiously institutionalised porn culture (notwithstanding the fact that the individual concerned is the product of institutionalised patriarchy etc etc).

hanahsaunt Thu 07-Feb-13 21:08:32

Looking at the next picture down - the first of 'for the record, this is what Anne is supposed to look like' - it's the picture that still makes my heart sore for her being a little girl all alone in the world. Anything else is a travesty.

WhentheRed Sat 09-Feb-13 02:14:43

The photo could not be more wrong for the message of the book. Through the generations, Anne's appeal is that she is the feisty, can-do, clever, moral kid who is not conventionally pretty but has irresistible charm and an irrepressible nature. She is gawky and red-haired. She is a beacon of hope for all the plain girls who were the friends of the "pretty" ones.

Not only does the model not fit the character, but the photo represents the creeping sexualisation of young women and girls. What next, Katie Price as Half-Pint?

piprabbit Sat 09-Feb-13 02:27:56

"A child of about eleven, garbed in a very short, very tight, very ugly dress of yellowish-gray wincey. She wore a faded brown sailor hat and beneath the hat, extending down her back, were two braids of very thick, decidedly red hair. Her face was small, white and thin, also much freckled; her mouth was large and so were her eyes, which looked green in some lights and moods and gray in others."

CheerfulYank Sat 09-Feb-13 02:56:42

I was so upset by this that I cried last night. blush It was more to do with pregnancy hormones and the fact that I've found out the baby is a girl, but this whole Anne thing definitely set it off.

What am I supposed to say to my daughter? Anne is clever and kind and hard working and loyal, but that's not enough apparently. To want to read about her, you have to have an image in your head of a blonde, sexualized teenager? It's not enough to be imaginative, not enough to be a caring friend, or any of those other things Anne is. I should just tell my DD to concentrate on being pretty right from the get-go. sad

I read today that the works of L.M. Montgomery are public domain, but the "image" of Anne belongs to someone. So someone tried to self publish it and used an image that looked nothing like Anne so as not to infringe on the copyright.

A fucking disgrace. angry

TunipTheVegedude Sat 09-Feb-13 09:56:25

Oh, CheerfulYank! <hugs>

V interesting re copyright. What would we do, suppose we were that publisher? I imagine we would use a monochrome image, or else to find one of a girl who wasn't a redhead but was in the spirit of Anne - a bit thin, thoughtful, dreamy. It was still no excuse for them to resort to That Pose.

Is it a girl cheerful?, are you telling people now? <nosy>

CheerfulYank Sun 10-Feb-13 01:34:49

I am telling Mumsnet. smile Yes, it is! I'm sooo excited, but this kind of thing worries me so much more now iyswim.

AnneofGreenFables Mon 11-Feb-13 19:35:37

I'm affronted on more levels than usual (and that's saying something!) grin

Yes cheerful ISWYM, after I had dd I stop hanging out on AIBU and pretty much moved over to FWR full time grin..

You accept certain things for yourself and then get scared shitless when you have to accept certain things for your daughter.

It's a bit naff and sad in a general way that classic books can be repacked by assorted shit-for-brains. But I agree with those who said that this being sheer stupidity rather than an aggressive active attempt to impress on all young women that they need to be SEXY, is less frightening. Someone would have gone, right, it's about a girl growing up on a farm. Pwhoooar, sexy landgirl picture (totally ignoring the hair colour, the age, and the fact that, er, women didn't wear checked shirts like that in 1899 or whatever).

FastidiaBlueberry Tue 12-Feb-13 20:20:01

I think that's what so depressing about it SGB - the fact that they are too fucking stupid to know what they're doing. They just unthinkingly buy into sexualisation because they have shit where their brains should be.

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