The Beauty Myth – How Do Women Really Feel About Their Looks?

In 1991, Naomi Wolf published The Beauty Myth detailing her understanding on how women continue to be oppressed throughout society for the benefit of men.Wolf argued that the instigation and use of the myth of beauty would be men’s ultimate weapon against women and their perceived rising power.Women continue to face blockades in the workplace due to the political and systemic use of beauty to define worth. Although men define the ideology of beauty, the demarcation of beauty is not defined thereby leaving the female confused about her own feelings of self.This allows big corporations to levy unfairly the work that women do increasing their revenue whilst enriching both female expenditure and manageability. This has in turn reduced the female’s self-esteem, a powerful tool for control.Naomi Wolf wrote this book in 1991 following both the first and second wave of feminisms. Are we embarking upon a third wave of feminism? Many skeptics of feminism report that the previously overwhelming injustice towards women and their cries that created and sustained Women’s Rights movements have now been diluted to a mere whimper. Is there any truth to this statement?I want to use this article to examine what if any changes have happened since 1991 and how women’s lives may or may not have changed.Women have always been necessary to the workplace even if not respected for their contribution. Latent history informs us that due to the First World War (WW1) in 1914 -18, women were necessary to move out of the home where they worked to fulfill the employment gap due to men being at war. When the war ended, women did not naturally want to give up this level of financial independence and return to the home. Cross-referencing historical information, the fight for Women’s Rights began much earlier therefore women were already aware of the injustices towards them thereby informing of the reluctance to ‘return to the home.’ In 1848, 68 women and 32 men outlined grievances towards women including women having the right to vote and signed a Declaration of Sentiments in New York. It was in 1872 that saw the national movement begin in the UK in the form of the National Society for Women’s Suffrage and later the more influential National Union of Women’s Suffrage Societies. Without this cross-referencing, one would be forgiven for mistaking that up until WW1 in 1914, women were not knowledgeable about their unjust treatment towards them.With the knowledge that women did indeed know that they were being treated unfairly and that they actually felt strong enough to take action in different forms showed both tenacity and strength; words that were not used to describe women at all. Since 1991, what has changed to strengthen Women’s Rights to being more equal to men?Not much in my opinion from the viewpoint of entry-level top careers for women although according to a recent research carried out by Astbury Marsden, they found that this year has seen an increase of 100% of women in management positions. This equates to 12% overall from 6% overall last year. We should be grateful! What about the significant pay gaps between men and women for equal jobs? Well, according to Dr. Carla Harris from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA), the gap is widening, currently for every dollar a man makes, his female counterpart earns 82 cents. I doubt very much that you will find a noticeable difference in the UK. In fact, upon research, women earned 15% less than men. Is this gap made worse in poor economic times?So not much has changed in terms of respect for females and the contribution they make in society and for society. Not much in terms of how females are viewed, mostly negatively and for sexual pleasures. However what is more startling (perhaps an over-exaggeration) is that although there have always been women ‘night-workers’ (prostitutes), women appear to be engaging in their own war against themselves. Let me put this into perspective about this internal war going on with women. Notwithstanding the ‘glamour’ needed for night workers to attract for work, women are now using this same concept for approval from men and in the meantime waging an unsubstantiated war on their self-esteem. Not that those women did not care for their looks previously, as their grooming ritual is natural in attracting a mate. However, because of the Beauty Myth, the natural birthing process of grooming for a mate has become blurred, confusing and instills a lack of confidence in a female. The precocious instigation of the Beauty Myth undertaken by men but calculatingly not clearly defined (Naomi Wolf) has left women attempting to attain not just the indescribable but the unattainable as beauty is left open for interpretation by the beholder (men).What has been the result?Financial contributions to cosmetic, diet and surgery have all seen a surge in willing captors, all seeking this beauty myth and all rather quite despondent when they realise that the goalposts keeps shifting. Cosmetic companies revel in ascribing what their latest product is and how wonderfully powerful some ingredient is, now contained in their product. I mean, who on earth really heard of Pentapeptide, let alone researched what it did before buying the product?Companies such as those in the cosmetic industry rely on the poor self-esteem of women to direct their products to. Women in return respond in an impassioned grab for the ‘miracle’ product that will stave off or at least slow down the ageing process. Women are made to feel that they no longer visually please and according to Wolf, companies can take steps in removing the female from her role in the workplace in favour of a younger model. Remember Miriam O’Reilly winning her claim against the BBC for what she alleges being dismissed on ageism and victimisation grounds? A second rate victory because she did not win on the grounds of sexism. What this tells me is what Wolf already identified in her book, that it is very difficult for a woman to claim against sex discrimination as the law fully supports what it calls a BFOQ (bone fide occupational qualification- USA) or the UK’s version of GOQ (genuine occupational qualification- Wolf). What this means is that a company may dismiss a woman if they feel that she does not measure up to their ideology of beauty. Now remember, this level of beauty is not defined and what would this really say? As beauty is in the eye of the beholder (self) is it not?The tribunal for Miriam O’Reilly was held on the 4-19th November 2010, 19 years after Wolf’s publication therefore women are still demonstrably being targeted and treated according to how they look and not what talents they may have in the workplace. So no real progress here then!Next time you go shopping, look out for the number of different beauty products. Be aware of the amount of time and energy that commercials use to sell you their copious amounts of products and the images they use. The use of anti-wrinkle creams on models probably not even yet 20 years old yet. Why on earth they need anti-wrinkle cream is beyond me. Next, these kinds of adverts will be shown using a 13 year old!Now look at grounded products such as lipsticks. Now you can get ones that last all day. In fact, you need another product to get the lipstick off because normal cleanser and water does not always work. Companies have to keep re-inventing the wheel to keep their profits up so their imagination runs riot and comes up with all sorts of products all doing the same thing but differently. Women fall for this; just take a look at her make up bag, products of the same but different thing, hardly used due to the copious amounts.What about products containing a certain ingredient that will ‘benefit’ perceived ‘bags’ under the eyes. Do you really think that by buying this product will alleviate ‘baggy eyes’? Why should it, because if it did then you would have to stop buying the product once you have been cured? So companies use only enough to make a slight difference and you have to keep re-buying to secure better results. I imagine companies laughing at women as they stand far at the side of the room throwing in the magic ingredient (that is to say how offensively low the ingredient is in terms of weight and productivity). Now, I am not saying that a particular ingredient does not work, for example caffeine. However, following your lovely cup of tea, you could quite easily reconstitute the teabag and put this on your eyes. Probably has more caffeine in the teabag than in the expensive product you buy.Let us look at how other companies have cashed in on the creation of poor self-esteem in women. An ostentatious amount of money is spent by females on diet products in the hope that the ‘extra’ pounds they think they are carrying will disappear leaving the female with a sense of acceptance and perceived beauty. The sugars used in many foods are replaced with a substitute that is less calorific. To me, this is just a lot of useless chemicals being pumped in the body and for no real gain. Processed sugars are not good for anyone in huge amounts and a wise thing for health purposes would be to reduce your intake not substitute this with something that requires the body to work harder to break it down if it is able to use at all.For research purposes, I typed in ‘what effect does artificial sugars have on the body?’ and I did not have to look far to clearly see the dangers of artificial sweeteners. According to author Marcelle Pick, (Obstetrician and Gynecologist) she speaks openly about being properly informed of possible side effects of sweeteners. I will not mention the company as I do not wish to give them any form of exposure but you can do your own research. This particular name brand is the trade name for Sucralose; a synthetic compound stumbled upon in 1976 by scientists in Britain seeking a new pesticide formation. (Marcelle Pick) What this company did was twist the sugar component of their product by citing the ‘natural sugar’ aspect. Yet more importantly, did you catch the word ‘pesticide?’ Now we go onto cosmetic surgery. This phenomenon has increased tenfold since the 1970’s. Now you can book a botox in your lunch hour and be back to work. The lackadaisical procedure should be seen as worrying and not that companies are seeking to make life easier for women to attain this face stiffening procedure. Remember the poor actress infamously known for her ‘trout pout?’ I will leave this here to save her blushes! The point I am making is some of these procedures are downright dangerous yet women are still clambering to risk life or limb.We do not have to search our brains too hard to recall some other poor soul who underwent breast surgery to enlarge her already natural assets and perceptually ended up looking misplaced. The female body is perfect as it stands and whilst some females may have to undergo a surgical procedure on medical grounds, this should not be confused with the female body, being nature at its finest.Women are undergoing all sorts of procedures in an attempt to gain the unattainable body. Bum enhancements, face lifts, eye lifts, neck lifts (anything that is deemed lift-up-able), nose adjustments, liposuction on any part of the body and do not get me started with lace fronted weaves or extensions. The woman spends a great deal of time and money on products and services to achieve the ideology of beauty and remember this perceived beauty is undefined. So what this means, is they end up chasing a mirage that disintegrates the moment they think that they are now acceptable. This results in a cyclical pattern in women dabbling in metamorphosis, re-inventing something else to feed that ever-growing pit in lost souls leading to other behavioural and emotional difficulties.If you look at the objective of The Beauty Myth, the power is monumental and the devastation that this myth leaves behind is great news for those instigating this concept for nothing more than mind-control over women. This concept reminds me of the Lynch (Willie Lynch) method; create a divide and rule mask, in this case, in women.

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Dworkin Feminists and Better Women

Some people referred to me as a male feminist, and others referred to me as a misogynist. In reality I am neither. I neither like nor dislike most women, just as I neither like nor dislike most men.What some people do not understand is that women are not a homogeneous entity. Women range as everything from Andrea Dworkin to Edna St. Vincent Millay. One cannot like one without disliking the other. Their messages were opposites of one another, and if they ran into each other they would have torn each other to shreds.Ultimately it makes sense to neither like nor dislike women. To demand that one like all women is as unrealistic as it is to demand that one like everyone. People will like whom they like, and they will dislike whom they dislike. And while some people see liking everyone as a worthwhile project, I disagree. To like all people means that one has to like Jeffrey Dahmer. People – both men and women – will always exist, and they will all make their choices. It is wrong to demand that one like everyone. In the real world, people choose whom they like based on what they have to offer and on the choices that they make.It is a worthwhile project to be understanding; it is a worthwhile project to be compassionate. But while the likes of Andrea Dworkin demand compassion, they show none. Any beautiful woman, any man who loves a beautiful woman, anyone who values beauty, comes under malicious attack, even if one has been through much worse things than has the Dworkin feminist. Since they do not show compassion, neither do they deserve compassion for their own, solvable, problem of being physically and personally unattractive. An African or Middle Eastern woman has suffered much greater wrongs than has the Dworkin feminist, and she has in most cases chosen to be a good human being. These women in most cases have more reason to hate men than any Western woman, but they for the most part refrain from doing so and continue to be good people and to be good to men.Which brings me to my central point, and that is: It makes sense to be neither for nor against women – to be neither a feminist nor a misogynist. It makes sense to be for women who choose to act with kindness and warmth and against women who choose to act in an ugly manner. As with men, women should be seen for who they individually are and treated on the basis of that. And the same approach has to be taken with people, period.As it of course already is, whatever anybody’s pretentions to the contrary.With Dworkin feminists, I have seen a manifestation of what I call the Mobutu character. Mobutu posed as the disadvantaged to get the aid from the West, which he used to oppress the truly disadvantaged – the people who lived under him in then-Zaire, while he lived in absolute luxury. The Dworkin feminist poses as the voice of the disadvantaged group that is women and then uses the compassion and resources she receives to abuse other women, especially ones nicer and prettier. And it is time that more people see through that racket and help, not the professional abusers that are the Dworkin feminists, but the kinder and warmer women around the world – and many in Western countries – who truly have it in a bad way.Is feminism wrong? No, women are half of the world’s population, and it is important that this half of the population have rights and powers commensurate with those of men. But this form of feminism creates a degenerative effect upon women where it attacks their virtues of kindness, beauty and tenderness and teaches them to act in ugly, mean-spirited and abusive ways. The person who actually likes women will be against this, as he will be seeing a crime being committed against womanhood: The crime, that is, of attacking the virtues that are more natural to women than they are to men while aggressively pressuring the women to become the very worst thing that they can be.What actually makes sense is to support good conduct by women and men both while fighting bad conduct by both women and men. What actually makes sense is to reward virtues rather than flaws, and to support the positive qualities with which women are more naturally endowed than are men while fighting those who attack these positive qualities. What actually makes sense is to support kindness, warmth, beauty and other positive feminine qualities and protect women from those who would attack and abuse these positive qualities. And that is as much the case with respect to attacks by the Dworkin feminists as it is the case with respect to attacks by genuinely misogynistic, violent, abusive men.In fact, the Dworkin feminism is in its essence misogynistic. It attacks the naturally feminine virtues and robs women of these virtues while teaching them to behave like the worst among men. It denatures womanhood and turns its followers into scoundrels. And that does not benefit women, any more than does it benefit the reputation and standing of women. More men – and women – will be willing to fight for women’s rights and well-being when they see women acting in better manner. And the nastier these women get, the fewer of both men and women will be willing to do the same.In recent years we’ve seen a men’s movement, who have used the misconduct by Dworkin feminists to claim that the misogynistic statements in the Bible and the Quran were right all along. The result has been innocent women suffering in horrible situations all around the world, while the Dworkin feminists remain comfortable in their academic, media, social work or corporate worlds and continue to attack and abuse the women who are nicer and prettier and men who love them. The worst in each gender are claiming to speak for the gender and create a coercion upon everyone else in their respective genders to be the very worst thing that they can be and to treat their partners in the worst way that they can treat them. This is how far we have come.These wrongful sets of incentives must be overcome and inverted. Kindness, warmth, beauty, tenderness, and other positive feminine qualities, should be encouraged and rewarded rather than attacked. Nastiness and meanness – either by men toward women or by women toward men – should be punished, and its possessors stripped of their power. Men should be encouraged to be good to women, and women should be encouraged to be good to men. Those who are willing to do that should be rewarded with good relationships, and those who are unwilling to do that should go without relationships until they are willing to change their attitude. And each gender should be represented by its best, not its worst, elements in the public debate.Thus it makes sense, for example, for Western men to get together with Third World women. Western men would treat those women far better than they could expect to be treated at home, and those women would treat them much better than would women schooled in Dworkin feminism. An international flux for relationships will make winners of people of both genders who are willing to act rightfully and to treat their partners in rightful manner. And it would make losers of both men and women who insist on being horrible to the other gender. A real-world mechanism of rational choice based on what the other party has to offer will create incentives on people of both genders to behave better toward their partners. Without a single shot being fired and without a single dollar of taxpayer money being spent, a mechanism will be put into place that will reward – and thus make more numerous – good man-woman relationships.As for women, more should look up to someone like Edna St. Vincent-Millay than to someone like Andrea Dworkin. Her way was much more noble and much more beautiful. She got famous through creation of beauty, when Dworkin became famous through creation of ugliness. She was in every way better than Andrea Dworkin, and she should be a model for more women in America and in the rest of the world.The part of men in this is as follows: Love, reward and treat well the women who are willing to behave beautifully, so that more women see the future and promise in acting beautifully and are willing to do the same. Once women see that acting in beautiful ways pays off, more will be willing to do that, and men as well as women will benefit.This contract between men and women has a fighting chance of making the world a lastingly better place.