BY TAMAR KEVONIAN
“I am Armenian, so of course I am obsessed with laser hair removal! Arms, bikini, legs, underarms…my entire body is hairless.” This is the latest quote from Kim Kardashian who will grace the cover of the September 2010 issue of Allure magazine.
Just in case you just emerged from the jungles of Borneo, Kim Kardashian is the oldest daughter of attorney Robert Kardashian who famously assembled OJ Simpson’s criminal defense team. She was known as Paris Hilton’s sidekick and emerged from Paris’ shadows only when, a few years ago, a sex tape of her with Ray J, an R&B singer, exploded onto the media circuit.
Now, she is the star, along with her sisters Khloe and Kourtney, of “Keeping up with the Kardashians,” a popular reality television program. She is famous for dating African-American men, her feature in Playboy magazine and her full-bodied Armenian “booty” of which she is very proud.
Recently, Kourtney, during an interviewed on “Chelsea Lately” with Kim to promote their upcoming season, revealed that her and her mother, Kris Jenner, had gone on a mission to find Kim an Armenian man. To do this, they made a pilgrimage to Glendale. “She thinks that Glendale is Armenia,” Kourtney says. “‘We’re in the land of your people,” she quotes Kris, to which she responds, “Mom, this is Glendale,” meaning that they were in a city in the United States. The studio audience laughs heartily at the anecdote.
Today, amongst the masses, they are the best known Armenians in the United States. Love them or hate them, everyone has an opinion about the Kardashians, as evidenced by the many “likes” and several comments my recent Facebook (the popular social networking site) posting received when I reproduced the quote from Allure magazine.
“Too funny!!! Love it!” wrote Mary. “BTW [by the way], she forgets the Italian side from her Mom’s side. As I remember, her grandmother Helen was a blond, blue-eyed lady. She didn’t look too hairy to me.”
“Dear Tamar at first my jaw dropped when reading your post, I thought it was your statement. Now that I know it was Kim’s it’s not as shocking,” commented Mark.
“Oh God… is there anything redeeming about that woman being Armenian?” said Mel.
She is perceived as a woman with an off kilter moral compass who is beautiful but without much of a thinking mind.
Still many agree with Mel in that they see Kim’s claiming of her ethnicity as reflecting negatively on the Armenian race as a whole.
And yet, in the popularity contest of mass media, she has taken the mantle away from Cher, our last generation’s Armenian celebrity who also incited strong emotions during her heyday. Cher’s relationship with her Armenian roots was tumultuous and she preferred to claim her Cherokee heritage rather her Armenian one. Still, she claimed it long enough to visit Armenia in the months following the earthquake in 1988 but has never really publicly proclaimed it since nor has she followed up on her altruistic impulse.
In contrast, the Kardashian sisters proudly flaunt their Armenian origins while mostly ignoring their Italian half – the first mass market celebrity to do so – the list of names of those who don’t is far too long to mention here. The sisters are hailed as “resident Armenians” during television appearances, have culled the cultural treasure trove for inspiration for their jewelry line and proudly flaunt the clichéd characteristics of being Armenian.
It is a well know fact that Armenians in general, both men and women, have an overabundance of body hair. It is also a well known secret that those afflicted with this symptom, both men and women, freely partake of the service of their local waxing lady – as evidenced by the public display of perfectly groomed symmetrical eyebrows.
It is also a well know fact that many Armenians live in Glendale and, although we hate to admit it, where our mothers try to find the perfect Armenian mate for us. As a result of their efforts, perfectly matched Armenian couples engage in sexual intercourse and eventual produce children – thus proving that we are not a result of immaculate conception as those very same mothers had us believing during our younger years.
The success of the show, its offshoots, the financial rewards and the garnering of continuous media attention attests to Kim’s intellectual savvy, at the very least she was smart enough to hire a very good advisor.
So what exactly is it that we hate about Kim Kardashian? Is it that she is beautiful, has made the most of her famous curves in a way so many others have failed, has sex and is sexual without repercussion, is wealthy or that she is popular? Are we simply jealous and wish we could be her? Or is it the cultural phenomenon of not helping a fellow Armenian – in extension, pulling them down when they rise above the fray – a trend Hrair from last week’s entry “The Concerned Citizen,” has expressed concern about.
Armenians in the U.S. would gain much by embracing Kim Kardashian. The advantages start with greater awareness of Armenians in general because, as the saying goes, there’s “no such thing as bad publicity,” meaning that, regardless of their opinion, people are still giving their time and attention to a topic. Another is discussing taboo subjects such as body hair and voluptuous body parts, that many in the community spend so much effort shamefully covering up. Finally, it is showing pride in the heritage by simply claiming they are Armenian without excuses, apology or explanation.
The saying “there is no such thing as bad publicity” is not accurately applied in this article, which is nothing more than a failed attempt and taking an “open-minded” position on a damaging phenomenon. True, there is no such thing as bad publicity for Kim Kardashian, as she is cashing her check everytime her name is mentioned anywhere. But it IS bad publicity for Armenian women who pride themselves on being culturally conscious, well educated and ethical. Kim Kardashian has reduced the role of women in society as being those who look to profit from their sexual appeal (and there is another word for that).
Agreed completely. There is no sense of history anymore. People forget she had sex on camera for the world to see and knowingly sold it for profit and fame. That is the ONLY reason for her celebrity. Now we’re glorifying her and saying that we, Armenians, must love her? for what? what a waste of an article and a degradation to Asbarez’ prupose.
“Kim Kardashian has reduced the role of women in society as being those who look to profit from their sexual appeal.”
Really? So when men look to profit from lying, being self-centered politicians or irresponsible financiers, or creating the Playboy magazine and then go on and change women the age of their granddaughters one after the other, they’re glorifying the role of men in society and are constantly hailed in the media, but when a woman profits from her sexual appeal, she’s “reducing” the role of women in society? Talk about hypocrisy and double standards.
This article was very well-written, and especially the last and fourth-from-last paragraph hit the spot. Well done.
really? why must we keep discussing this person?
in one article, she’s “proud of my Armenian VOR”.
in another, “I am Armenian, so of course I am obsessed with laser hair removal! Arms, bikini, legs, underarms…my entire body is hairless.”
couple that with the fact that she was dumb enough to make a sex-tape with a celebrity (both of which are likely profiting greatly from) and you’ve got a recipe for a person with no morals, no principal. she’s BANKING on the fact that she’s half Armenian and you people are eating it up.
what a joke. the only thing Armenian about her is her last name. let this abomination disappear into the fog already.
According to Tamar we should keep discussing this person because she is a “fellow Armenian” and we want to bring her down because we are “jealous” of her. This is how pitiful some Armenians with lousy opinions have become. God help us.
Well said.. Wish we had more Kims!! She was invited to the celebrity dinner with President Obama this year. When interviewed about it and what she would like to work on with the President, she said the official recognition of the Armenian Gebocide! Now, regardless of how successful that mission might be, she got the word out.. How many Armenians do we have that get invited to dine with the President?! Let us embrace Kim, and her sisters.. and support them instead of putting them down for reasons I have yet to understand.
I didn’t see that show you mentioned with Chelsea Handler where they go to Glendale to find an Armenian guy, but thats highly offensive and racist. I live in NYC and my family came over in 1915. We never have been to Glendale. What I notice about the Kardashians are they play up Armenian steterotypes to the full and exploit them. The thing is their only 50% Armenian. Kim always says she has a big butt, body because shes Armenian and now hairy but if you notice they never talk about their Armenian heritage or culture to the public, the Armenian Genocide. I noticed on April 24th, Kim makes a statement on her blog saying “Its Armenian Genocide Day” with no explanation of what that is, not even any links,,, she has never discussed it,,
It is my personal people that her and her sisters/family cant stand Armenians and are just using it as a marketing tool to sell themselves as different, exotic. If you notice on their show you never see anyone from their Armenian side of the family, always the mom’s side even at Kholes wedding.
They promised to visit Armenia but went to Africa instead.
As far as Armenians being hairy, I disagree, all of the women on my Moms side have no hair. Besides the hairest people tend to be hispanics, have you heard Jennifer Lopez, Penelope Cruz, Eva Longoria say they need laser because of their hispanic heritage? The answer is no.. Because not all hispanics are hairy and they would be playing up the “stereotype”
Dita Von Teese is half Armenian as well but she doesn’t need to name drop her ethnicity to make $$$.Shes a hell of alot better looking than any Kartrashian.
Forgot as well, supermodel Yvette Nelson- half Armenian-
Cyrinda Foxe- Model and Icon of the 70s, 100% Armenian
Mia Tyler- Model- 50% Armenian
All these women did not exploit their ethnicity for attention or fame, If you are going to you better educate the public about things that are most important in Armenian history and culture like the Armenian Genocide, our history, etc,, Not just say “I have a big butt, boobs, and im hairy cause im an Armenian”
Shes a PHONEY!
josey, You are so wrong. She is proud to be Armenian and that is obvious cause if she wasn’t there would be no mention of it EVER…but what do we see?..She always claims being Armenian before anything else, hence, she of it (that goes for her and sis’ and brother). Her being obsessed with laser hair removal cause she is Armenian is an obvious joke…Speaking of which, i have to admit, she IS a boring person…humor is not her thing… Also.. just cause she made a sex tape and it got leaked doesn’t she has no moral or principals. Get real. The Armenians all over LA and wherever (even ARMENIA) that do what they do to make their money illegally have the least of morals and principal off all.. Don’t speak of her cause she is making a living the legit way. …ohhh and she aint banking cause is Armenian.. Being Armenian has nothing to do with it.. She is just a smart business person making the right moves…Might be the face that the one big mistake was her chance to move up quicker, but the fact is when you see a opportunity you take advantage of it… We should be happy that she is bringing the Armenian name up as much as she is… cause if you haven’t seen the map lately, we a spec on it…
Cher is still bigger thank Kim. And she did say she was proud Armenian in a recent interview – see http://www.reporter.am/go/article/2009-04-10-cher-is-proud-to-be-armenian or http://www.reporter.am/pdfs/C0216.pdf for a more detailed story by Paul Chaderjian.
But looking forward to Kim’s trip to Armenia.
In my opinion, Kim is not armenian, not italian, she is a typical american girl in showbiz. At least, she doesn’t pretend to be anybody else. About the hair removal – she must be obsessed with it not only being armenian, but first of all being a woman. And i want to remind her about Caesar – well known roman general and emperor who used to remove the hair of his entire body and this happened 2000 years ago.
Hye Kim, we welcome your participation, your voice, as you join to further our Armenian cause before the world…
Many thanks. Manooshag
Kim is actually the second eldest daughter of Robert Kardashian. Kourtney is older.
Bull’s eye, Tamar hit the target dead on. Maybe because we have suffered or have been hated. Armenians love! We love all Armenians, those in the RA, those in the Diaspora, those that can speak the mother tongue, those that can’t, those that are Armenian by marriage or maybe just by acquaintance, those that are just friendly to us and even those that ‘tried to commit suicide by standing near an Armenia’ (similar to a Woody Allen movie). The point is to love all Armenianess, the good, the bad and the ugly, all. It helps our spirit and all our causes. The act of Nobleness cannot be conquered.
Completely agreed. Though it would be nicer to try and make the ugly a bit more beautiful while still loving those who out of choice or not have become that way 😉 And learn Armenian, of course.
Hratch, I could not have said it any better myself !
First of all, she’s a half breed and a result of a dysfunctional American and NOT an Armenian family. She can call herself Armenian all she wants but is one really an Armenian just because his/her last name ends in an “ian”? You can put lipstick on a pig but it is still a pig. Calling her Armenian therefore equating herself with so many of our Armenian sisters who are ethically conscious, educationally brilliant, and culturally very mature who spent half their lifetime to achieve is a disrespect to all Armenian women.
Secondly, In addition to being a well-known attorney, I heard her father was a strict disciplinarian unlike her non-Armenian mother. Actually, a sorry excuse for a mother, who instead of instilling morality and discipline in her daughters, is in competition with them and thinks she is a teenager with no worries in the world.
Lastly, I have a strong feeling that if her mother was also an Armenian just like her father was she would be a doctor, a surgeon or an attorney and not someone who makes a living selling her body.
I agree with you Ararat.
The good: She’s definitely the most famous Armenian in the United States. I think even if you are from the jungles of Borneo, you still know who Kim K. is. Just go to Glendale for a couple of hours and every Armenian girl you see looks like a mini Kim. The hair, the clothes, THE HAIR!!!!! I read somewhere that she has the most popular hair style in the United States.
The bad: The most famous Armenian in the United States is a porno star!! Don’t be shocked, but she’s not as dumb as she may look. She has a good head for business and knows how to cash in on controversy. After all, her mentor is Paris Hilton. Yet, just like her mentor, she’s has no real talent and she’s not even famous for her last name. Well, not really. Can’t really compare Hilton to Kardashian!! Again, she’s famous for making an amature porno flick!!
The Question: Do we distance ourselves from her, or embrace the attention she brings to Armenians? Are Armenians that starved for attention that even a porn star will do? Yes we are. So until we find a squeeky clean, talented Armenian who can become a household name In America, we have to settle for a porno star!!!!!
This is the stupidest point of view I have ever heard. Why I don’t like her, because she is a dumb, shallow and uncultured product of today’s society! EMBRACE HER???? are you out of your mind???
Is this the only thing we are proud on promoting? seriously are you INSANE or are you as DUMB as KIM Kardashian?
And BTW…. ARMENIANS don’t live only in GLENDALE! We are everywhere! (Myself from Argentina) BRazil, MExico, Colombia ( for crying out load they have have a city named Armenia) Spain, France, etc.
MY Advice to the MORONS that Support this freak of neo-capitalist-nature is: READ, Get educated, become people of culture, be bold, risk it all… get out of the typical stereotype and be YOU.
AND FOR THE LOVE OF GOD. SUPPORT REAL ARTISTS, THIS IS A JOKE ARTICLE!
PS: For the record I’m proud of the things that make me an Armenian, and goes beyond MY HAIR, MY NOSE, ETC but to remove to something else… erases who I’M. What I do is I adapted to my cultures and I bring it forward to the world.
PS 2: To envy something you must want to be that. There is nothing that the world of the Paparazzos and the empty people of the likes of the Kardashians and the Hilton’s can contribute to my persona and to the world more than a brain fart.
Again I think this is the most stupid article I’ve read in your newspaper. I think you need to get out more, specially from Los Angeles.
Embrace Kim? Why??? There is nothing Armenian about an immoral person like that. Just because her father was an Armenian and she has an IAN at the end of her last name does not make her an Armenian!!!!
Ani, lol reality check: yes it does!!!. And don’t judge Kim, or people in general because you are immoral as well, we just don’t know. EVERYONE helped make Kim Kardashian famous and now everyone is jealous. hahhahaha and FYI, Kim and her entire family (especially her mother) are clever, business savvy, and smart for taking advantage of the stupid gossip crazed general public. You can call her all the names you want, but at the end of the day, she still gets the last laugh.
Don’t be chicken, why did you reject my last comment? 🙂
And stop filtering comments from nay sayers, if you’re going to shove this topic into the community’s face, then be ready to post responses from ALL sides, not just those that suit your needs.
Don’t touch on controversial topics if you’re not ready to have a full, open, honest discussion Ms. Kevonian, it speaks badly of your journalistic integrity, remember that. If you can’t do this, I suggest you find a new line of work.
I made five comments only one of which got published. I’m surprised they let your last comment post. I said something similar with harsher language but no profanity and still got ignored. This “moderator” of Asbarez whoever they are is obviously is engaged in hiding the truth of our culture and what we deem acceptable and what we deem repulsive. Clearly this article has shown that there are a few Armenians here who will gladly embrace repulsiveness in order to get attention. In the meantime, I hope all of you Armenians who cater to a morally bankrupt so-called “fellow Armenian”, one day find your daughter or sister in the same category as old Kim.
There are literally dozens of other far more deserving Armenian-Americans that could have been highlighted and showcased as potential role models. Physicians, lawyers, Dentists, Architects, Engineers, the list goes on. Why not speak about Armenian-American men or women that actually participated in various causes both Armenian and non Armenian, or Armenian women that saw combat in the Arstakh war of independence? Or how about the multitude of Armenian-American physicians that date back to the early days of the 20th century such as Dr. Varazdat Kazanjian, the first Professor of Plastic Surgery at Harvard University School of Medicine to modern civic Armenian-American physicians and other professionals in the local communities.
All of you misguided “fans” of Ms. Kardashian, if you’re content with your sister, mother, or wife being “just like Kim” then by all means keep brown nosing your support. But if you can’t put your money where your mouths are in person rather than an anonymous Asbarez post, then shut your mouths and accept the fact that Kim Kardashian is a disgrace to our culture, our community, and her own half Armenian heritage, nothing more. Stop all the “politically correct” chatter while pretending to be “open minded”, if your own sister, wife, or daughter was beginning to emulate this low life, you would not be making declarations about how “great she is”.
I propose Tamar start dating Africans, if she isn’t doing it already. Then slip out a “video” “accidentally”, Perhaps she can “hit it big” like Kim, and we will all be so jealous of her.
The promotion of half-breed Armos in porn flicks with Africans. I never thought I’d see that day sponsored by an “ARF Newspaper”.
You have some very literal-minded readers (getting upset about light joking about Glendale? Wow, that’s a thin — even if hairy — skin). Anyway, I liked this article for its macro-suggestion of embracing a wide range of illustrations of what it means to be Armenian. As these comments show, many people are wedded to a very narrow idea of who is Armenian and who is a sellout/half-breed/you name it. None of these Kardashian girls are interesting to me, and I think their choices are asinine. But I wholly support the notion that we should enjoy and embrace their very public explorations of Armenain identity, and the opening those may reveal about what it means to be Armenian now.
I saw that same episode, and my family runs Dolcevita Laser Center, here in Glendale. When we saw that episode, we were beside ourselves thinking if only she could have come to our laser clinic. Oh well, her going to one laser clinic is really good for all laser clinics. Good on you Kim!!
Monte Melconian is an Armenian American role model and hero not the Kim Kardashian. Kardashians are American buisness women peroid, this is all about attention money and fame . . There are many succesful Armenians in America and in the world who are real role models for our youth, but the most important role models for Armenian youth should be our mothers and fathers. From that point of view the Kardashians as a family are a disgusting (espically Khole who has no morals ethics or values) they are a poor reflection of what Armenians are like to those who have never met an Armenian person.
Reality Tv is rotting the brains of this nation the Kardashians are just cashing in on it while they can they would be fools not too. There are Armenians out in the world who have brains who read went to college or have educated themseleves enough to know what is really going on in the real world. We do not need a writter for Asbarez to tell us to embrace Kim Kardashian as if she was the patron saint of Armenians.
What do you expect from girls whose father probably never dated Armenian. After all he married Kris and she is not of Armenian descent. They are spoiled brats and I wish they would stop talking about how hairy Armenian women are. Im 100% armenian and not hairy. My mother and grandmother was not either.
They’re not half Italian. They’re half scottish/dutch, half armenian. They have tiny amounts of italian and native american blood. But Armenian is more ‘exotic’ so of course they’re going to claim that half.
Well known fact, tamar? Maybe u and ur surrounding are hairy but don;t talk for all Armenians, your propaganda is no different than any Georgian, Turkish or Azeri. Neither me or anyone in my surroundings is hairy.
I agree, I am Armenian 100% and am NOT hairy, never was!! No one in my beautiful family is hairy either and that includes the men (dad and brother) as well.
The supporters of this article should be ashamed because you are no different then the enemy itself. Your primitive ideology about your ancestral heritage and culture cause great damage to the Armenian community. It is a form of Cultural Genocide that decimates our ancestral roots and beliefs . Shame on all of you who support that kind of behavior.
I like Armenians. They are courageous. Adventurous.
I forgot his name but there was an excellent Armenian writer I used to admire and love.
He was very wellknown
I like Armenians. They are courageous. Adventurous.
I forgot his name but there was an excellent Armenian writer I used to admire and love.
He was very well-known
😀 what’s the use of someone’s(whoever’s) pride to be an armenian for armenian community??????????
My father was Armenian but he did not marry one. He told me once he first saw my fair skin mother who he described as having the perfect figure, he was in love. He explained to me that he not only loved her green eyes, light brown hair, and her shape, but also noticed learned the fact that she was humble and kind and did not hate people from different ethnic groups like his family did.
He told me that his sisters who claimed to be Christians, were very jealous of her.
This is sad.
I am a feminist. I am Armenian. I do not believe in slut-shaming or bringing down fellow women, yet every time this woman is in the news, I cringe because she represents EVERYTHING wrong with society. She represents greed and narcissism. She represents the lowest form of selling out. Period. Every young girl who looks up to Kim is another young girl who wastes time on subjects like waxing and anal penetration (yes the Kardashian girls’ favorite subject) instead of reading about women who really matter. Our young girls already have to fight the media’s war on women’s bodies. Why perpetuate that by idolizing a woman who was put on the map SOLELY for her body and NOTHING else? Let’s celebrate Armenian women of substance, shall we?
Micheline Aharonian Marcom
Diana Der Hovanessian
To name a few… All beautiful, inside AND out.
It is SO refreshing to read an intellectually stimulating pro-Kardashian post by someone who has clearly given it a great deal of thought. I get where you’re coming from, and I love your article. But I’m still so, so, so disappointed she is one of Armenia’s biggest brands.