Laurie Toby Edison

Photographer

A Saving Grace

Laurie says:

Being Monroe by Lauren on Feministe speaks to me beautifully and powerfully about our personal struggles with the hostile beauty myths.

4 Responses to “A Saving Grace”

  1. Thanks for the link. I’m bookmarking Feministe.

    There’s a Cathy cartoon in which she’s angsting about body perfection:
    the breasts optimize at a certain age, the rear end optimizes at another, it’s all perfect for about twenty minutes…..and then you get pregnant.

    When I read that, I realized that the culture wasn’t just crazy and misery -inducing, it was also profoundly anti-biological.

    Might any of you guys happen to be able to find a link to the cartoon?

  2. Lynne Murray says:

    Nancy makes a good point. Maybe it’s my caffeine level but I thought immediately of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 15–the one that starts:
    “When I consider every thing that grows/
    Holds in perfection but a little moment…”

    He’s talking about, just at Cathy and the plastic-surgery addicts are seeking, the rare perfume of beautiful youth. Cathy seems to want to be beautiful so as to be loved–as those comic strips are all about the frustrations of a single, working woman. So, there’s an other-directed side to her complaint.

    Ultimately, though, there’s a toxic self-centered quality in seeking to simulate a surface of eternal youth rather than accepting the ticking clock of life and moving on already.

    I think the anti-biological Nancy mentions is part of the same “control freak” side of our culture that comes out in the dieting craziness. Much as we arrogantly wish to change at will, science provides no real weapons that will sculpt our bodies like modeling clay or fend off Time’s decay. Shakespeare suggests fending off ageing by having children to create offspring of equal beauty–and Art. To preserve a sketch for future generations–
    “And all in war with Time for love of you,/
    As he takes from you I engraft you new.”

    No, “engrafting” was not a primitive form of Elizabethan plastic surgery–LOL!

  3. Laurie says:

    Lynne and Nancy,

    This is great stuff. We’ll be posting about it in the next few days.

  4. [...] In the comments to our recent post which links to Feministe’s “Being Monroe”, Nancy Lebovitz says, “There’s a Cathy cartoon in which she’s angsting about body perfection: the breasts optimize at a certain age, the rear end optimizes at another, it’s all perfect for about twenty minutes…..and then you get pregnant. [...]

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