The concept of Celebrity and Fame are ones that affect relationships both positively and negatively. Fame refers to the state of being known by many people, and Celebrity is the noun for a famous person. The experiences and perspectives of celebrities who have gone through the process of Fame have all had their relationships affected by their status both positively and negatively – whether it is a celebrity’s relationship with corporations, the concept of Fame or their peers and rivals. This statement is supported by Brian Caswell’s novel _Asturias,_ Jay Z and Justin Timberlake’s song _Holy Grail,_ and Donna Rockwell’s article _’Fame is a Dangerous Drug: a phenomenal glimpse of celebrity”_ all showcase these arguments with textual evidence. In brief, textual evidence have been provided to establish the implications Fame present on a celebrity’s relationships.
Corporate relationships with a celebrity are professional, but the effects of Fame on these relationships may force the bond to become personal. An example of a positive relationship between celebrities and a corporate figure is demonstrated through Asturias’ relationship with their manager, Max. This is exemplified through the use of comparison in Chapter 22, “These are people … Kids. They’re not some ‘bottom line’ on a sales-report”. It outlines Max’s personal concern for the band – he overlooks the professional implications on the band’s/his career, worrying more about their well-being.
On the contrary, the relationship between Asturias and Symonds, a distant but more powerful figure, is an example of a negative relationship between celebrities and corporate figures. For example, the use of objectification is expressed by Symonds in the same chapter, “They’re a product, for Christ’s sake! We made them, we can remake them.” This use of objectification takes away the Asturias’ human dignity and conveys Symonds’ negligence on the band’s well-being and emotional state, selfishly focusing on generating quick profit and securing his income and position on the ladder. In summary, the relationship between celebrities and corporations is a relationship that can either be based on nurturing and guiding said celebrity, or harshly exploiting/overworking them for high profits.
Another factor that affects a relationship which is influenced by Fame is the nature of Fame itself, and its connection with the celebrity. Fame has an influential nature that commonly consumes the celebrity ‘s identity; it requires attention at all times and occupies the subjects’ lifestyle, privacy and well-being – the thirst for fame can result in the subject being obsessive and wanting more, after having experienced the perks and benefits of becoming a celebrity. An example of how the implications of fame affect a person negatively is demonstrated through the use of rhetorical question, “Was he scared? Did he call out to me?” This use of rhetorical question was triggered by the event of Alex leaving Abuelito behind due to his priorities to the band, missing Abuelito’s peaceful demise – he was so caught up with his celebrity priorities that he didn’t even know how Abuelito passed away.
In comparison, a positive opinion on this notion is stated through the use of motif, “The ride was every bit as exciting as they’d promised.” “The ride” is a motif found throughout the book, and refers to celebrity-hood – this statement expresses that despite the sacrifices in relationships, living famously is as exciting as it is perceived to be. This opinion can drive celebrities (or even non-celebrities) to work harder and be consistent, getting what they want constantly.
The article strengthens this argument that albeit being aware of the negative implications of fame on its subject and their relationships, the subject still disregards these implications in order to keep pursuing the perks of Fame. This is exemplified through the use of figurative language, “the allure of wealth, … keeps the famous person stuck in the perpetual need to keep their fame machine churning.” Through the use of figurative language, the author expresses the obsession of celebrities with fame, and how they tirelessly work through, neglecting their relationships on the way, their way to staying relevant. Therefore, these texts obviously overlook the negative aspect of fame, and focuses on the positive outcomes it may bring to its subject.
Finally, through the use of a bridge, Justin Timberlake sings, “And you take the blade right out my heart, just so you can watch me bleed / And I still don’t know why, why I love you so much.” referring to his addiction with being a celebrity – he overlooks the deeply negative impacts of Fame, and blindly craves for more which shows a celebrity’s obsessive relationship with Fame.
Competition within the celebrity industry also affects relationships positively. These positive results a relationship gains from competition is exemplified through the use of colloquialism, “Enough sticks, it was time for carrot.” This use of colloquialism comes from working with donkeys, where sticks were used as force to get the donkey moving, whilst carrots were used as motivators to do the same thing: it’s basically referring to whether you use force or threats on someone to get them to do something or persuade and motivate them into doing something. In this case, it portrays Max’s security in his situation – he is so confident about negotiating with his competitor, Symonds, that he started with threatening him but knowing the man, he offered him a better deal that would get him fired meaning his liability would be taken away.
Another example is presented in Holy Grail, where the use of personification is expressed, “Fuck the fame, keep cheating on me, what I do, I took her back.” This use of personification expresses the struggle with staying relevant as a celebrity as if it were an intimate relationship (when he says that Fame “cheats on him”, he is referring to whenever other celebrities get more attention than him as if Fame favoured them more). Initially a negative statement, he then goes on to say that he takes Fame back, which can be comprehended to mean that he is driven and motivated to success by his competition which makes it a positive statement as to say that he has gotten over the nature of fame, and learnt an effective way to cope with it.
However, as celebrities become more immersed and competitive, they also become more jealous and greedy. This is best exemplified in Asturias through the use of the multiple narrators. The use of multiple narrators allows Tim to reflect, “Everyone shines in their own way, but one child shines brighter. In our “family”, that one was Alex. And I got to the stage where I couldn’t forgive him for it…” Through this quote, it is clearly seen that Tim and Alex’s relationship was deteriorating because of Tim’s thirst for attention and recognition: something only Fame had inflicted on him. Originally being a friendly person, his ego is slowly fed by his fans which made him envious of Alex’s vitality to the band.
The article reinforces the negative effects of jealousy and greed through the use of metaphor, “I’ve been addicted to almost every substance known to man at one point or another, but the most addictive of them all was fame.” The metaphorical comparison between the concept of fame and illegal drugs suggest that fame evokes an unhealthy addiction within its subject – like how drugs detaches its user from their relationships and lifestyle and into addiction, fame does the same. Thus, these textual evidences outline the notion of fame detaching its subjects from their originally close relationships, through jealousy, thirst and greed.
In conclusion, Fame is a concept that affects a celebrity’s relationship both positively and negatively – it merely depends on the situation the celebrity is in. The arguments of fame affecting corporate relationships, relationships with the actual concept of fame and relationships with peers and rivals during the pursuit of becoming famous are all provided with both the positive implications of these arguments, and the negative. These arguments are supported by Textual evidence from varying texts such as a novel, an audio text and an article. Overall, the textual evidence provided clearly demonstrate how Fame affects a celebrity’s relationships with their surroundings.