It's not that Kardashian doesn't work; it's that her work is not recognized as legitimate within a sexist world that sees feminine culture and lifestyle as frivolous pursuits undeserving of any serious attention.
Sorry if this is a double post (I'm still not great at the whole Kinja thing).
Hmm ... I'm finding this hard to rebut. She's right. It's work. Not particularly difficult work for some, but I wouldn't be able to do it even with tons of money and consultants. I get tired after 30 minutes in the gym and social settings are annoying.
So is the right focus of attention of disdain on the culture that values this work at such a high level? Perhaps. There are a lot of jobs that I don't think we should pay people so much to pursue. Like hockey or driving cars quickly and erratically. But my tastes shouldn't be imposed on others that find pleasure in watching people do those things.
Still. It feels icky to "pay her" with attention for being a very famous sex object, but its not that different from any other male or female model (or many actors and actresses ... some politicians).
And this leads to another problematic, near hypocritical stance. We should not be derisive of her because part of feminism is empowerment and control over ones own public perception and the work that goes into that control, yet we should not encourage young girls to emulate her since it fosters a belief that their self-worth is tied up in socially manufactured standards of beauty.
The flaw I see in that statement is that it takes away Kim's agency. We don't know that her self-worth is tied up in her body image. That's an unfair assumption. Part of defending her must come from her choice in creating this industry of Kim. It is her in control, not the control of a male agent that is forcing this on her in order to succeed.
So at the end what are we to say to a daughter that plays this game. You can be Kim if you want, just don't let not being Kim determine how you feel about yourself.
I'd rather a kid grow up to be a doctor than Kim, but on what grounds do I have the right to say that without sounding like others did when their kids wanted to be painters and musicians? Value to society? Value to culture? Whoever determines those values seems to have placed a high value on Kim's contributions to culture and society. Can this appall me?
Can one defend culture seriously without seeming (or being) out of touch at best and at worst bigoted? I would argue yes, but it's a tough road to haul when trying to do so justifiably, logically, rationally without getting into subjective debates on personal tastes. My first stab at doing this would be Kant's categorical imperatives, but that's a diatribe for another day.