Sunday, November 7, 2010

Beauty Ideals Influx

1 comment:

  1. Emily, thanks for this video post... you made some great points about the subjectivity of the idea of beauty as evidenced by different cultures' ideals. It's fascinating what lengths women will go to to be considered attractive, and body image is definitely a dishearteningly insidious torment for young women in the U.S.
    Something that strikes me is the sense of self-worth which attends confidence in one's own body. I think so many women's sense of self-worth is extremely dependent on whether or not they have sexual appeal... in our culture I think one of the only acceptable ways for women to have power is through their sexuality -- their power to tempt, to entice, to persuade, to attract worshipful admiration. I would posit that this idea of 'beauty = status' is a factor in the huge numbers of women opting for plastic surgery (men also get a lot of cosmetic surgery due to bodily shame in comparison to ridiculous ideals, though I perceive the pressure to look good is greater for women). You also pointed out that the impossible images of attractiveness the media typically puts out do a great job of selling endless products of self-improvement (I think it's always important to ask, "who profits?").
    I think it's great to feel beautiful/handsome/attractive, I just think it becomes problematic when a person's definition of attractiveness is based on external sources rather than from hir own conception.

    I love the quote: "Beauty must be defined as what we are, otherwise the concept itself becomes our enemy." -crimethinc workers' collective

    Thanks again for your insight and commentary!