I have read a translation of the article in an Argentinian newspaper, and I would like to give an aspect of the adulation of celebrities which I do not think is explicit in Mr. Duncombe's article.
Anthropology has studied the phenomenon of idols from different points of view. It is generally accepted that idols express the ideals of a culture. Duncombe agrees in the particular case of contemporary celebrities, saying that they have everything that the average citizen would like to have: fame, money, power... I would add to this list, impunity. Celebrities can do things that would be impossible for normal people to do. A popular musician in my country, Charly García, can beat journalists, end concerts in the middle of a song, insult the owners of the places where he sings... and he is socially forgiven for... being Charly García. While the normal person sees that, he has fantasies insulting his own boss, but, sadly, he knows he isnot Charly García.
I can agree with Mr. Duncombe about using celebrities as a footstep to politics. But I'm worried about who these "political celebrities" will be. Citing Bono as an example of political concern is not the same thing as promoting Paris Hilton or any other "Homer Simpson type" celebrity. We have to know that Homer can amuse us, but he is not an example to follow.
Sebastián Andrés Guidi
Tandil, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Dec 16 2007 - 6:18pm