(video after the jump)
"The Coastie Song" video, racking up hits across the Web, is a catchy, clever and pointed farceof a small butunmistakably visible portion of the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s student body: Jewish American Princesses living in private dorms like the Towers and Statesider. Yet, under their large Gucci sunglasses, North Face parkas and Ugg boots these Jewesses aren’t laughing over rappers Beef and Quincy’s "east coast Jewish honey" spending daddy’s money lyrics. According to the New York Times, the song "raised complaints of anti-Semitism, shed more light on a cultural divide among students and renewed complaints about a long-standing housing policy."
However you personally take it, what you see in this video is the commonly shared (and accepted) stereotype of the Jewish female for many UW Badgers. In fact, the majority of the student body, hailing from the rural Midwest, have little or no direct exposure to Jews in their upbringing and sadly, their bite-sized understanding of our culture gets boiled down to a pair of fuzzy boots and a Lawng Aylind accent. Just like the video says.
With their witty tome, Quincy and Beef raise a microcosmic framing of the Borat Question: does good-naturedsatire do more harm or good when most of the audienceisn’t in onthe joke?
Text by Matt Kaftor, (matthaze *at* gmail dot com) Wisconsin Alum ’06