It’s bound to happen, when a movement like Occupy Wall Street takes hold on a national scale, that some famous people in the entertainment business will attach themselves to the cause, and that their bids for legitimacy as self-styled political activists will be met with skepticism, if not worse. Some celebrity endorsements might be better received than others, depending on the people and the methods involved in particular attempts at political alignment.
In that vein, we have the curious case of Miley Cyrus and OWS. The pop princess that Disney built has apparently released a tribute video, “Liberty Walk,” repackaging an earlier performance of the teen star performing a number off her latest album as a show of support for the Occupy movement. What are we to make of this? Is it just so much noise on the part of a capitalist creation ever on the lookout for image-boosting opportunities? If these questions are worth investigating, The Village Voice offers one way of breaking it down below, and the video’s down there too. —KA
The Village Voice:
Cyrus herself is a great guide as to how the image of an anti-capitalist movement could make so much sense next to the processed guitars and gloopy affirmations of “Liberty Walk.” The anti-establishment rhetoric of the 1960s, once so controversial and divisive, has been processed by children’s entertainment into a kind of self-esteem builder, rebellion turned from a political stance into the mark of a well-rounded personality. You can see it in Miley’s signature flashing of the peace sign, the righteous questioning of Cold War foreign policy becoming a wish for everything to be chill y’all, and you can see it in the sign displayed as the video’s final image, its tweenishly hand-markered text reading “WE CAN CHANGE THIS WORLD… IMAGINE,” with the text interrupted by a red heart.