For fans of the Jersey Shore, sexism is practically expected. But in Jersey Shore season 4 (Italy), you may discover it coming from an unexpected place. That’s right, folks. Sexism seems alive and well in the heart of Florence at O’Vesuvio Pizzeria. It’s the girls who do the dirty jobs and get assigned difficult tasks while the boys are often seen doing little more than standing in the street flirting with customers. And we know that a Snooki can flirt just as well as a Vinny. So, what’s the deal?
Cultural questions arise right away, as a viewer is left on their own to discern whether it is MTV that is forcing these “funny situations” (which then asks – why would MTV executives think sexism is funny to their viewers?) or if it is the owners of O’vesuvio or Italian culture in general that expects female workers to do more than the male ones. Is there some reason that the men are more respected and revered in the workplace?
Examples of this Jersey Shore sexist workplace behavior has been seen since they started working at the Pizzeria. While Snooki and Deena are seen being assigned to make pizzas in front of the hot ovens and clean the public toilets, Vinny, Pauly, Ron and Mike are usually situated in the open air outside of the store with flyers where they only need to flirt and entice customers to enter. In earlier episodes, we can see Snooki complaining about this. The unfairness of the situation was even used for comedy. And if they boys are also doing as much of the other type of work, and vice versa, viewers have not been privy to this. In the most recent episode, we see Deena assigned to clean a bathroom as a wide-eyed Pauly wanders by and remarks, “That sucks.” It would not appear he was aware this was a task he could be assigned.
Perhaps in retaliation to this workplace dichotomy, the girls feel even less determined to take this job seriously. In one episode we see Snooki and Deena doing their “hijinks” such as having someone buy them wine while they work, and hiding in trash cans.
As so many American’s cringed at the thought of what Italians would think of Americans based on a few reality TV show stars, it is just as easy to flip the coin and have American’s judging Italy. Is what we see of Florence on the Jersey Shore is accurate of Italy? Does it make you want to go there? Based on the rampant allegations of excessive unfairness surrounding the Amanda Knox trial and what I’ve seen on Jersey Shore, my Roman Holiday dreams of going to Italy are rerouted for a safer, less sexist vacation destination. That’s right, I’m going to Canada!
The message displayed on Jersey Shore is clear to this viewer when it comes to sexism at O’Vesuvio Pizzeria: The girls are there to work (and will be scolded if they don’t) – the boys are there to be pretty. And that is not a message anyone should be casually entertained by.
If reps for Paul DelVecchio, Nicole Polizzi, Michael Sorrentino, Jennifer Farley, Ronnie Ortiz-Magro, Sammi Giancola, Vinny Guadagnino, or Deena Nicole Cortese would like to comment for their client or have their client respond directly, please let us know.
And what about YOU? We are open to comments from fans that wholeheartedly agree and who wildly disagree. Here are some questions to get the discussion started:
- Does Jersey Shore paint a picture of Italy that makes you want to visit there?
- Do you think what you see of Italy on Jersey Shore is accurate?
- Have you sensed sexism on the show, specifically in the Florence workplace?