Washington Post writer Robin Givhan made the point recently that fashion is about fantasy. As American women becomes more obese, models become skinnier. “The fatter the general population, the thinner the idealized woman.” Maybe it’s “self-loathing” that makes super-skinny women look so good to the chunkier masses.
While I agree with many points in Givhan’s essay, her logic — which leaves the fashion industry off the hook on model size, until women lose weight — escapes me. I’ve seen no documentation that women — except for the slimmest fashionistas — embrace this model imagery in any way.
Any woman who cares about her sensuality, good health, and exercised, toned and strong body — any woman with a libido — does not want to look like a concentration camp survivor.
If we looked like her — like the woman on the left, if we even COULD look like her — we would lose our health, our hormonal balance and probably stop menstruating, our hair would fall out, bones crack and most likely we would die.
Givhan’s argument totally escapes me, even though I agree with her point about obesity in American women. For certain, we are consumed with self-loathing.
My career has been spent in the fashion industry, not known for caring one wit about ‘real women’. I agree with Sady Boyle on Broadsheet, who says that the culture, as opposed to fashion, embraces a different image of woman.
Especially a Smart Sensuality culture is turning its back on Modern fashionista obsessions and the designers who flaunt them. Give us the eighties supermodels, who were celebrities in their own right. Stephanie, Naomi, Cindy and Christy didn’t exist as coat hangers. They ‘owned’ the clothes for real.
Let’s me honest here on another topic. The major media has been rather quiet on this fashion-industry body-image topic. Why? Well, Christmas is coming; ad sales are down; and print ads may not rebound in 2010. I’m sure that these facts have nothing to do with a story that basically says it’s fat womens’ fault that models now have heads bigger than their hips in Photoshop ads. Anne
Yes, Thin’s In — But Why Is That A Surprise? Washington Post