One of my favourite bloggers, Ashe Mischief, wrote a post today entitiled 9 Things Christina Hendricks Taught Me About Body Love & Confidence. I think it’s fabulous that a lot of women are embracing their curvy silhouettes as a result of the Mad Men actress being unapologetic about her own. I still have issues, however, with the media’s constant focus on women’s bodies, whatever the type. I am a proponent of diversity in fashion be it size, race, age or ability, but many are now holding Christina Hendricks up as an “ideal” and I have big problems with that. Here are four reasons why:
1. I’m not curvy!
A flat-chested, narrow-hipped girl like me feels decidedly inadequate and less womanly around someone with such generous assets. Ashe’s post mentions that Christina’s husband loves her breasts…what man doesn’t love breasts? They all seem to, which sucks for those of us who don’t really have them! Having a Marilyn Monroe figure has never been a detriment. As far as I can tell it has always been considered the most sexy and desireable figure type. Unfortunately, if I were to gain weight it wouldn’t magically go to my boobs and hips.
2. Promoting a curvier ideal does not promote diversity.
Anytime we idealize one body type over another somebody suffers. It seems that Ms. Hendricks, through no fault or desire of her own, has single-handedly swung the pendulum so that now runways are filled with cleavage, and boobs are apparently de rigeur. (Were they ever “out”?) Once again, sucks for those of us who don’t have ‘em.
3. Fetishizing Christina’s body is objectification.
In a post which was derived from the answer to a college essay question, one blogger asked “When will we stop treating women’s bodies like the latest trench coat?” In other words, let’s stop fetishizing, judging, analyzing women’s bodies, deciding which type is in or out, and value women for all our stellar qualities.
4. It’s still about what boys like.
A major aspect of the current Christina Hendricks fixation is a focus on what men prefer. A common danger in fashion is women playing up to men’s desires. I keep hearing people say how great it is that men think Christina Hendricks is hot. Women, stop using what men like as a yardstick for your own worth! It doesn’t matter what men like. What do you like? I’m sure Christina Hendricks is a wonderful person with many talents. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t know because all I hear about is her body.
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