“It’s interesting how peer pressure within the class can create a new norm,” Fahs said. “When practically all of the students are participating, they develop a sense of community and enjoy engaging in an act of rebellion together.”
Whenever a body norm becomes this pervasive, questions arise about the reasons for its compulsory status. Deborah Aronin’s forthcoming documentary, Pitstache, from which the title of my article is derived, addresses the compulsory aspects of underarm hair removal.
Women "do gender" both to manage their own (dis)comfort with their bodies and to manage others' anxieties and expectations about their bodies, particularly along racial lines. Women learn to pass as heterosexual to escape workplace discrimination, violence, and negative judgments from others, restrict their eating, hide or pathologize their menstruation, straighten and lighten their hair and skin, medicate their sadness and anger, and minimize sexual violence. They also disguise and conceal their "natural" bodies by "maintaining" their bodies in a way that conforms to social norms.
These trends deserve serious empirical and theoretical analysis, for "by refusing to trivialize women's 'beauty' practices, then, we question the narrow definition of 'acceptable' feminine embodiment, which maintains—at the most 'mundane,' and, hence, insidious level—the message that a woman's body is unacceptable if left unaltered."
I once shut up someone in a discussion about "is it possible to be a feminist who shaves" by asking, "so, wait, are you saying that a woman couldn't have possibly come to the decision to shave independently of cultural norms, and the reason why she can't is because women are all brainwashed by the patriarchy and cannot think for themselves?" She didn't have anything to say to that.
I haven't a single fuck to give re: what anyone else wants to do with their body hair and expect the same consideration from partners of any gender.
You can have a preference, but you can't compel someone to do something to their body because you want them to.
Aw, man, let me follow the nanny.
She doesn't shave her legs. Jesus-
Women like that are so hot.
« Older "[Helene] Meldahl said that in the mornings she us... | Averaging the world's handwrit... Newer »
This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments
Buy a Shirt