Monday, October 15, 2012

No shit, Sherlock

Indeed, women's bodies are battlefields, now as always throughout history, almost everywhere from the north pole to the south pole. Almost. It would behoove our evolution as a species to spend lots of time studying the cultures where women were and are not demeaned, battered, sold, and demoted to second class citzenship. There are precious few. Why did those cultures develop differently? What did they know that we don't? What can we learn from those cultures?

Yes, I have many questions. But I should also say I understand why our bodies are targets. It's instinctual, it has to do with the fact that we make the babies. We hold in our bodies the mystery of life and death. Everyone wants a piece of that. Many want to control it because the mystery we embody is powerful. It's not rational.

The New York Times posted a story this past week in which they described as a trend for female TV comedians: "self acceptance as a new form of defiance." Here is a link.

A quote from the piece:

"Society makes a show of supporting people who make peace with their extra pounds, but we really celebrate those who declare war on their bodies. "

I've been thinking about that ever since, about the way that women in my society starve themselves, flog themselves at the gym, and devote at least part of almost every moment engaged in self loathing because of the size and shape of their bodies. It doesn't matter if they are thin or fat, fit or flabby - no, this has nothing to do with their actual bodies. It's about the self loathing. It's about our bodies as battlegrounds.

Apparently, even in a society that allegedly supports women's rights and freedoms, our bodies are battlegrounds. If the men don't do it to us, we do it to ourselves. Good lord.

May self acceptance take hold as a saucy, sassy, sexy and powerful new trend in my society. May it be so. Shalom.


ellen abbott said...

I whole heartedly agree as someone who accepted her flat chested, skinny, with hair growing in all the appropriate places body in her early 20's. Would that more women would stand up to men who sneer at women proud and strong in their natural selves. I've always wondered where the human race would be if half the population was 'demeaned, battered, sold, and demoted to second class citizenship'.

Reya Mellicker said...

You are my guru.