This right here is a shout-out to the Seventeen Magazine Project, which is self-described as an “attempt to spend one month living according to the gospel of Seventeen Magazine. This blog will serve as documentation of this endeavor, as well as commentary on the adolescent experience.”
I started reading it a few days ago, and I’ve been following it since. The premise of it is to see “what would happen if an actual teenager were to apply all of these “tips and tricks” to her life? Would it actually improve? Would she actually become cuter/hotter/thinner/fitter/healthier/more popular? Do embodying these traits even make one’s life more fulfilling?” These questions strike close to home, because I’ve been reading/subscribing to Seventeen since I was maybe 14. And while I’ve always thought of it as somewhat of a guilty pleasure, I’ve never really felt that guilty about it, or ever really thought about it as having an impact on my greater life. Yes, Seventeen is not exactly intellectually stimulating, to say the least, and yes, it does encourage girls to wear things like “tribal” prints without mention of any actual tribes (which I’m not sure is actually a big deal, because there’s only a certain an extent to which you can be politically correct for a mass market for shirts). But just like Jamie, the girl doing the project, I don’t really know any girls who read Seventeen as a life guide, or even for advice on how to deal with boys. Mainly I, and my friends, read it to look at the clothes—blatant consumerism, I know, but it doesn’t seem particularly harmful.
This is not to say that I don’t think what Jamie Keiles, the girl who runs this blog, is doing is not cool. I’m interested to see what she comes up with, even though I highly doubt it will be earth-shattering. If nothing else, it will probably show that the magazines do not really influence teenagers, except to serve as somewhat of a distraction from real life and advertising propaganda.
Either way, she’s funny and really self-aware, making it pretty amusing to read. So I’d say check it out. Plus, she’s another teenage feminist blogger!