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Is Celebrity Culture Beneficial Or Harmful To Our Society?

1000 words - 4 pages

What are celebrities? Today, we live in a society that tends to drown our everyday lives in mass Medias such as tabloids, reality shows, newspapers such as the New York Times and personal-interest magazines, like People and Us, to get a glimpse of the interesting lives of everyday celebrities. Some might say that a celebrity is someone who we idolize while Daniel Boorstin, author of the book The Image: Or What Happened to the American Dream, states that a celebrity “is a person who is well-known for his well-knownness” (Epstein1). But the question still remains… what are celebrities? According to Epstein, A celebrity is something or someone who can be talented and full of achievements and yet wish to broadcast ones fame further through the careful cultivation of celebrity, while one can be the total opposite of achievements and be less talented and yet still be made seem otherwise through mechanics and dynamics of celebrity creation (Epstein2). Celebrity culture today is epidemic; some might agree that it is sweeping up America in a harmful way while one might argue that it is beneficial to our society.

Over the last few decades celebrity and fame has changed dramatically, from Alexander the Great to Kim Kardashian. Talent and achievements no longer play a huge role when it comes to our celebrities. “Much modern celebrity seems the result of careful promotion or great good looks or something besides talent and achievement” (Epstein2) with that being said celebrity-creation has blossomed into an industry of its own. Keeping up with all the gossips from breaking up to hooking up, law suits and drama many might come to an agreement that celebrity culture is starting to be the great new art form in our new generation and that it is overriding the more traditional entertainments such as books, movies, television shows and plays
Viewpoints of the beneficial or harmful celebrity culture are still debatable today. Neal Gabler, author of Life the Movie: How Entertainment Conquered Reality, believes that celebrity culture is beneficial. He also believe that celebrity “served as therapy”(Gabler3) and that it “provide escape”(Gabler3) and “provide us with life lessons… capture the culture moment…give us a glimpse of transcendence or because they stimulate the imagination”(Gabler3). On the other hand Chris Hedges, author of Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle argues the opposite. In the Article Celebrity Culture Is Harmful, Hedges wrote about how celebrity culture is harmful to our society. He believes that “celebrity culture drowns out public discourse and encourages materialism and self- absorption” (1).

Witnessing headlines about celebrities on mass Medias, news articles and just basically everywhere we look we tend to believe that these stories about them are factual. Many of these stories capture our attention and hold anticipation that older forms merely manufacture. Neal Gabler claims that “people learn about...

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