I had a plan for today’s blog post…. I was going to write about the coming spring and I was going to do what I do here fluffy feel good pieces. But then something changed my mood and made me feel anything but light and fluffy. Before I go further I want to make an adult language and concept warning for this post. This post is NOT for children. It is adult content. This is NOT my usual subject matter for this blog. But, something in me just seems to have snapped and I feel a need to address it.
I am going to get a hair cut soon. It has been over a year since I last had my hair cut. So I am looking through magazines, something I virtually never do. And all I am seeing are these images of women, and they all seem to fall into one of 5 categories. Category 1 open mouthed appears to be offering oral sex, category 2 angry and highly bitchy in appearance, category 3 defeated sorrowful and weakened or as I am starting to think of it the “I have just been raped save me!” facial expression, category 4 the empty brained blank stare look, it says I have no opinions no hopes and dreams or ambitions of my own, I am blank inside waiting for your orders captain. In a magazine over 90 pages long with multiple images of women and their facial expressions, I count 2 images of smiling happy women. When did happy become unsexy? When did an unhappy, or empty woman become the high point of sex appeal? I find this frightening because this is the 2nd magazine I have bought that has this issue and I am pretty sure if I open any others I will find the same issue.
Who are these magazines seeking to sell to? I for one have goals and dreams and ambitions beyond sitting around with empty eyes and my mouth open waiting to be put to use. I am disgusted that this is the image of beauty we are selling to little girls. All this work for women’s liberation, the vote, the right to work, storming the glass ceiling. But we are still surrounded by and surrounding our daughters with these images of women that do not show happiness to be the state to seek. No the state to seek that is being perpetuated is always one of those 4. And then we wonder every time some horrible event happens how men get this idea that women are objects for use and abuse. And ya know what, it is staring me in the face. We are teaching them at the same time as we teach our daughters that striving for happiness isn’t the way to go, seeking to be unhappy to look attractive is the way to go, sitting around being an empty bubble head is the way to go…. And men are learning from these pictures too…. It is showing women in this light I feel that has a huge amount to do with American rape culture. These kinds of images of women as empty pleasure vessels is a massive problem and it frightens me. I don’t generally discuss this stuff….. But looking at these images was just so poisonous to me that I had to spit it back out again.
More importantly, after looking at these atrocious images that glorify women in a week and ignorant state rather than smiling, happy and satisfied with their lives, I wanted it on the record that I am not so empty headed as to miss it. How do all of you feel about these kinds of images of women? Am I the only one bothered by it? Why can’t magazines aimed at women glorify a healthy and happy state of life for women rather than showing them in such a sick twisted and frightening way? What is so unsexy about being able to formulate intelligent opinions, or look happy and satisfied with your day to day life? How is it healthy for little girls to be looking at these images??? It is offensive to my sense of self to see this as the standard of beauty, to always be wearing one of those 4 facial expressions. Why is it magazines can’t see there is life beyond that for women? And why is it I am bothered so much by it? Might it be because the women of my family have always fought for equality? Maybe…. But maybe it is because I am terrified of what my future daughters might grow up to become because of images like these…. How do all of you feel about it? Maybe I am just more sensitive to it lately because it has been such a long time since I have looked at a “fashion” magazine. I don’t see what is fashionable about these expressions on all the model’s faces. I really don’t. I think it is more in fashion for women to be getting and being happy about high paying jobs, or going through a university education, or getting a PhD. Why do we glorify this yuch rather than a happy smiling face???