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View Diary: This week in the War on Workers: Models deal a blow to child labor in New York (52 comments)

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  •  I think it is Moroccan feminist (6+ / 0-)

    Mernissi who has made the point that in the West,size and age are used to make women disappear as effectively as keeping them in a "harem"......
    I wrote the above and then googled till I found this for your,umm,enjoyment.

    Yes, I thought as I wandered off, I have finally found the answer to my harem enigma. Unlike the Muslim man, who uses space to establish male domination by excluding women from the public arena, the Western man manipulates time and light. He declares that in order to be beautiful, a woman must look 14 years old. If she dares to look 50 or, worse, 60, she is beyond the pale. By putting the spotlight on the female child and framing her as the ideal of beauty, he condemns the mature woman to invisibility. In fact, the modern Western man enforces one of Immanuel Kant’s 19th-century theories: To be beautiful, women have to appear childish and brainless. When a women looks mature and self-assertive, or allows her hips to expand, she is condemned as ugly. Thus, the walls of the European harem separate youthful beauty from ugly maturity.

    Western attitudes, I thought, are even more dangerous and cunning than the Muslim ones because the weapon used against women is time. Time is less visible and more fluid than space. The Western man uses images and spotlights to freeze female beauty within an idealised childhood, and forces women to perceive aging – the normal unfolding of the years – as a shameful devaluation. ‘Here I am, transformed into a dinosaur,’ I caught myself saying aloud as I went up and down the rows of skirts in the store, hoping – to no avail – to prove the saleslady wrong.
    - See more at: http://odewire.com/...

    "George RR Martin is not your bitch" ~~ Neil Gaiman

    by tardis10 on Sat Oct 26, 2013 at 11:49:35 AM PDT

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    •  This is a beautiful, haunting passage, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tardis10, Joy of Fishes

      worth a whole diary, thanks.

      It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

      by karmsy on Sat Oct 26, 2013 at 12:02:00 PM PDT

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    •  There are advantages (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tardis10, schumann, Joy of Fishes

      to being invisible.  I get left alone to shop in peace, no one trying to hustle me to buy something I don't want.  And it's great fun when a petitioner looks past me, I ask what he is supporting, it's marijuana legalization and I say, 'Of course I'll sign it - this is way past due' and the look on his face is priceless.

      I've always thought a lot of the reason models are kept thin is two fold, one - they are basically clothes hangers and curves disturb the line, and two - a lot of designers are gay men who prefer a boyish shape.   I remember reading somewhere that the ideal female body is always the one that is hardest to achieve - where food is scarce plumpness is considered attractive.  Still pretty damn manipulative.

      •  What a terrible attitude (0+ / 0-)

        Thin women are a dime a dozen.  Doenst make them models.  

        "Boyish shape"?  Im looking at the VS catalogue and I dont see a single "boyish" shape.

        I think the lady doth protest too much about being left alone.

        It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it. Robert E. Lee

        by ksuwildkat on Sat Oct 26, 2013 at 01:57:10 PM PDT

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    •  Oh yeah, it's totally worse being a woman (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Peace Missile

      in the West than in the Middle East.

      •  OT .... (0+ / 0-)

        Do you read fiction? Have a favorite author or book?
        Just wondering as I wait for the paint to dry. (literally not figuratively)

        "George RR Martin is not your bitch" ~~ Neil Gaiman

        by tardis10 on Sat Oct 26, 2013 at 01:25:38 PM PDT

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      •  Can you compare the two, first-hand? (0+ / 0-)

        Thought not. Maybe you shouldn't try to be the "expert," but let somebody with some first-hand knowledge speak about the experience.

        It's here they got the range/ and the machinery for change/ and it's here they got the spiritual thirst. --Leonard Cohen

        by karmsy on Sat Oct 26, 2013 at 02:45:40 PM PDT

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