Celebrity engagement in global “helping” is not a simple matter of highly photogenic caring for needy others across borders; it is a complex relationship of power that often produces contradictory functions in relation to the goals of humanitarianism, development, and advocacy. This article argues that celebrities are acting as other elite actors in international affairs: investing considerable capital into processes that are highly political. It traces the emergence and practices of the elite politics of celebrities in North-South relations, an evolution made possible by recent changes in aid practices, media, and NGOs, then considers exemplary cases of Angelina Jolie in Burma, Ben Affleck in the Democractic Republic of Congo, and Madonna in Malawi. These celebrity practices as diplomats, experts, and humanitarians in international affairs illustrate the diverse and contradictory forms of engagement by celebrity “helpers” in North-South relations.
|Title of host publication||Oxford Handbooks Online : Scholarly Research Reviews|
|Number of pages||22|
|Publisher||Oxford University Press|
|Publication date||Apr 2016|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2016|
Richey, L. A., & Budabin, A. C. (2016). Celebrities in International Affairs. In Oxford Handbooks Online: Scholarly Research Reviews (pp. 1-22). Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199935307.013.3