“At least a third of a woman’s life is marked with aging; about a third of her body is made of fat. Both symbols are being transformed into operable conditions so that women will only feel healthy if they are two thirds of the women they could be. How can an “ideal” be about women if it is defined by how much of a female sexual characteristic does not show on her body, and how much of a female life does not show on her face?” – Naomi Wolf, The Beauty Myth
‘Plain of feature, and certainly overweight, she was nevertheless a woman of wit and warmth. In one interview she said: ‘I’ve never been into clothes or figure and the interesting thing is I never had any trouble attracting men’
This is the translation for anyone not yet up to speed:
‘Although she was fat and ugly she still managed to have some smarts and charm. And overall she’s okay ‘cause men still wanted to fuck her.’
I’m not naive. I know that the way a woman looks, matters. It is what it is. It shouldn’t matter, but it does. We know this because even our representatives of the “ideal” in this culture have the shit photo-shopped out of them. Women, and men, are prescribed a female beauty standard that is cruel, unachievable, and extraordinarily limiting.
So we start there. From infancy. Women being told they are fundamentally flawed in order to sustain the cosmetic/beauty industry and men being told a woman’s worth is dependent upon her striving for the cruelly unachievable, in order to be attractive to the very men who use the unachievable ideal to criticize real women. This becomes even more diabolical as women and men age. Women are cautioned about aging as if it were a disease, an illness which can and should be treated. A woman with a soft belly and stretch marks, ample bottom, and boobs like pendulums, is thought to have “let herself go”. ‘Exactly where have I let myself go to?’ I always want to ask. Seems like my body is going places without me. And as my body goes it seems I have to get louder.
Men, on the other hand, have no such sanction. They can become fat. They can wrinkle and go grey and be bald and be impotent and people will still listen to what they have to say. The world has created forgiving and respectful euphemisms for fat, old, impotent men. They are well-built, dignified, regal, and have EDD. EDD, for fuck’s sake. And this pomposity is completely accepted.
I think Colleen McCullough was beautiful, and her beauty was the least of her triumphs. But that’s because I listened to what she had to say. And the tragedy is, if she had a dick, The Australian would have celebrated her beauty as much as I do.
“People who love themselves, don’t hurt other people. The more we hate ourselves, the more we want others to suffer.”
― Dan Pearce, Single Dad Laughing
It’s a good lie, perpetrated for decades on end by the psychoanalytical elite and spawned during the salad-acid days of the self-esteem movement and post-modernist mummy blaming. If this person had only been raised to believe they were special. If only they had a sense of their own self-worth. If only they loved themselves. If they had been breast fed longer, not been breast fed so long, had been held more, had been cosseted less, if they had only been permitted to express themselves, if they had just been told to shut the fuck up occasionally…some parents are so thumb-screwed by PC fascism that they are actually afraid of their own children. Loathe to do something that will impact on their child’s self-esteem, many choose to simply do nothing at all.
I’ve never believed that bullies have low self esteem. They seem to me to have an excess of self-esteem. The willy-nilly over-application of child-praise seems to create a disturbing sense of entitlement in them while simultaneously draining out any vestiges of empathy. Our child-worshipping culture is like a catheter – indulgent self-satisfaction in, narcissism and conceit out. Self-confidence, self-regard, self-approval – self, self, self – the roots of self-esteem and bullying are almost indistinguishable.
I know I may be out here on my own again, but I think that sometimes it’s okay to tell little Johnny he’s just being a right little shit. Sometimes it’s ok to bypass the hours of analysis and counsel, the behavior plan, the positive reinforcement and every other accoutrement in the psychologist’s arsenal, lobbed into the void in an effort to discover and placate the origins of little Johnny’s anger. Has anyone just considered telling him that it is a requirement that he stop tormenting his peers? God forbid we just throw some good old fashioned discipline at little Johnny – the latest American psychoanalytical studies are touting that asking a child to take sole responsibility for the pain they cause others is retaliating against the bully with bullying.
Here’s the rub: they who bully with impunity as children, bully with impunity as adults. And then they raise more little bullies. More of us should be standing in the face of this and saying “No”. Quietly, firmly, unflinchingly – No. And teaching our children to do the same. This in no way implies a deficit of compassion, but it does require a lack of fear in all of us. Sometimes it’s okay to tell little Johnny he’s just being a right little shit.
I do not fight against men, but against the system that is sexist.
~ Elfriede Jelinek (Nobel Prize in Literature in 2004)
Don’t be surprised when your phone calls don’t get returned, your invoices get misplaced, your messages shredded and your urgent business shuffled to the bottom of the pile I plan to get to in 2016. Just because I don’t carry my brains around in a sack between my legs, don’t assume my IQ is no bigger than your shoe-size, love. “Darl” is a feminist issue.
“So, in the interests of survival, they trained themselves to be agreeing machines instead of thinking machines. All their minds had to do was to discover what other people were thinking, and then they thought that, too.” – Kurt Vonnegut, Breakfast of Champions
“The emotional, sexual, and psychological stereotyping of females begins when the doctor says: “It’s a girl.” – Shirley Chisholm
“I think her last role she was playing a bloke.”
Then Carrie Fisher: