Hi Meltingpot Readers,
Do all of you know who Snooki is? If you're like me and don't have cable, nor do you have teenagers in the house who might be attracted to over-hyped reality shows on MTV like the Jersey Shore, then you might not. I still have never seen The Jersey Shore and I still don't have cable, but I know who Snooki is. She's the big-haired, short limbed, big mouthed, nicely tanned and somewhat crude young woman on the Jersey Shore who somehow has become a pop-culture phenom.
I've hardly paid her any mind and her popularity has barely registered in my circle of friends, but Snooki was the front page story of the Style section of the New York Times last Sunday so I decided I should educate myself and find out what was so amazing about this woman who seemed to gain all of her fame for being a walking stereotype of an Italian-American "guidette."
The article in the Times only served to reinforce my original idea that Snooki is a walking stereotype and the reporter seemed just as clueless by the end of the article as to why she has captured the hearts and minds of the American public. But there was one line in the story, a parenthetical at that, that suddenly made Snooki a fascinating character study to me. Snooki was adopted at six months of age from Chile.
So suddenly, this girl who has almost single-handedly redefined Italian-American youth culture (in South Jersey) becomes an interesting example of a child who wholeheartedly adopted the culture and subculture of her adoptive parents, to the point of extreme. As countless adoptive parents struggle with this notion of how much of a child's original culture should be preserved vs how much should the child be encouraged to take on their adoptive family's culture, can Snooki be a case study?
Again, since I barely know anything about Snooki, I don't know if she's ever talked about being adopted or if it's even something most of her fans know. I did a google search and the information is definitely out there, but her getting drunk or changing her name to Snickers seems far more interesting to her adoring public.Do you think Snooki should use her platform to talk about adoption or is this nobody's business and should we just let her enjoy her 15-minutes of fame?