But what if the Oscars were not merely forgotten for another year; rather, they assume a central point in the debate surrounding gender in the entertainment industry – more specifically, in the allocation of prizes?
In the following article, Elsesser argues that the industry has no legitimate onus to split the Oscars acorrding to male/female roles.
Women, she reasons, have excelled in acting as well as men; it is a skill that is non-biological in nature (unlike sport), thus rendering the ‘equal chance’ category nigh patronizing.
Many hours into the 82nd Academy Awards ceremony this Sunday, the Oscar for best actor will go to Morgan Freeman, Jeff Bridges, George Clooney, Colin Firth or Jeremy Renner. Suppose, however, that the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences presented separate honors for best white actor and best non-white actor, and that Mr. Freeman was prohibited from competing against the likes of Mr. Clooney and Mr. Bridges. Surely, the academy would be derided as intolerant and out of touch; public outcry would swiftly ensure that Oscar nominations never again fell along racial lines.
Why, then, is it considered acceptable to segregate nominations by sex, offering different Oscars for best actor and best actress? [Source]
It’s an interesting debate and one that has passed sans address since 1929; check it out here.