Retail Therapy: What Mannequins Say About Us
Like the larger fashion industry, mannequin design echoes seasonal styles that come and go, both in regard to technological improvements and the way we view our bodies. “It’s often the body attitudes and facial expressions that reflect what’s going on socially,” says Hale. Accordingly, the stiff, unnatural bodies of early mannequins were well-matched for the Victorian Era‘s restrictive ideas about women’s rights and fashions, which dictated they wear many layers of heavy fabric over tight-fitting corsets.[more inside]
France's upper house of parliament, the Sénat has passed a women's equality bill, which aims to redress some of the persistent inequalities between men and women, in the sphere of pay, jobs and parental leave. [more inside]
Donald Trump trumpets the integrity of the Miss USA pageant. The truth is a bit different.
The New York Times asks seven 'experts': Does makeup ultimately damage a woman’s self-esteem, or elevate it? [more inside]
Most of the prints in the exhibit "Beauty, Virtue and Vice: Images of Women in Nineteenth-Century American Prints" were designed simply to please the eye, but they are also useful to historians who would like to understand how nineteenth-century Americans thought about the world in which they lived. Although prints are often works of imagination (even when they are grounded in fact), they still have much to tell us about the time and place in which they were created. [more inside]
80s supermodel Paulina Porizkova (images may be NSFW) on aging: Beauty, unlike the rest of the gifts handed out at birth, does not require dedication, patience and hard work to pay off. But it's also the only gift that does NOT keep on giving. It usually blossoms at an age where you're least equipped to handle its benefits and rewards and instead take it all for granted, and by the time you start understanding the value of it, it slowly trickles away. How's that for revenge of the ugly ones? (related)
Hidden World of Girls: Girls and the Women they Become is NPR's collaborative year-long, ongoing series between The Kitchen Sisters, NPR and listener submissions. The series explores "stories of coming of age, rituals and rites of passage, secet identities—of women who crossed a line, blazed a trail, changed the tide." [more inside]
The New York Times covers a 'new celebrity trend', Unshaven Women, Free Spirits or Unkempt?
Researchers have found that beautiful women have more children than their plainer counterparts and that a higher proportion of those children are female. Those daughters, once adult, also tend to be attractive and so repeat the pattern.
Geiko of Kyoto is a stunning photo gallery of Kyotos's Geisha - both the mature Geiko and the apprentice Maiko. Melissa Chasse annotates many photos with fascinating details and offers an account of her tea party with Mamechika, a lovely Maiko. For more, this lovely Geisha site offers a brief history from the era of the floating world, more photos, Ukiyo-e art, and links. Also see y2karls' prior definitive post on ukiyo-e.
Beyond Compare: Women Photographers On Beauty "An international photography exhibit from Dove that aims to inspire dialogue, move beyond stereotypes and challenge women to question their definition of beauty."
(Flash, mostly safe for work)
(Flash, mostly safe for work)
Startlingly beautiful girl. What is her life like? Does she resent it? How uncomfortable must life be for this girl's boyfriend? Why do restaurants give her a 75% discount if she sits at a window table? Rhetorical questions all, but sometimes you gotta ask. Be sure to click the slideshow thingie. (NYtimes link)
Okay, so the tabloids take the eroticization of female tennis players to the extreme, including The Mirror, which has paid Barbara "Babsi" Schett 50,000 pounds to promote her as the next Anna Kournikova. Last fall we talked about women sports players being on beauty, not talent; while the beauty judging goes on, they forget to even mention player records. There's Babsi, Anna, Jelena Dokic, and the supposedly beautiful Krasnoroutskaya who says of Kournikova what everyone keeps saying about good-looking female players in general: "She makes the beauty of tennis. She started it. Now tennis is very popular. People come to watch her. That helps everybody."