Posted by – January 19, 2013
No, really: you can get surgery – called “The Barbie” – to remove your labia minora so you can have a ‘tidy’ seam of a vagina instead of – well, a regular one. For those of you who don’t know, pussies are like snowflakes: no two are the same, with variations in color, size, texture, hairiness, size of clitoris, position of the vagina (the actual opening) and shape of the minor and major labia.
It’s one of the things that people who really love female genitals seem to find endlessly fascinating. (Note: not all women have female genitals, and some men do.)
I’d like to propose that any man who does these surgeries considering getting “the Ken” – where a man’s penis and testicles are melted down and smoothed into a tidy lump.
Posted by – August 5, 2012
Nate Jones has done a nice photo essay on “what if all Olympic sports were photographed like women’s beach volleyball?” which makes the point very, very clear. (& Some of you out there will be all for this turn of affairs. Honestly, that swimmer is – wow. It explains why they’ve gone through more than 100k condoms in the Olympic Village. If everyone looks like that, well, DAMN.)
My friend Lena pointed out this short article on Think Progress by Alyssa Rosenberg about the return of D’Angelo to me, which talks about how D’Angelo was undone by the pressure to strip – and maintain an exacting and desired physique for his fans – and Rosenberg talks about how he was, effectively, treated like a woman.
Which, well of course: women have to be beautiful to be considered talented, but if beautiful have to work against type to be considered smart, or artistic.
Yet there is this long, long history of treating young black men as a stereotype too, of the young black buck: known for their bodies, and brawn; assumed to be hung, sexually provocative and yet also sexually and physically objectified. In a culture where well hung or athletic or both is often also assumed to mean small brained, or non/anti-intellectual, young black men are up against a lot of stereotypes women are up against as well. Both too are demonized for their apparent sexuality: women for having any, and black men for having their assumed and expected expertise “threaten” white men’s power and self-image.
So in a sense he wasn’t treated like a woman at all; he was treated as many young black men are treated, and have been: expected to be nothing more than their physical, sexualized, and objectified bodies.
Posted by – December 14, 2011
Oh, I love the gender deconstructing that’s going on in the wake of Andrej Pejic’s career. Now, he’s in ads for a “super push up” bra.
The most common plastic surgery for men is for gynecomastia – that is, to remove breast tissue. That said, if most guys with gynecomastia looked like Pejic, I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t bother.
Wow is he the Hotness.
Posted by – July 18, 2011
Posted by – January 28, 2011
To a lot of people, transgender identities are new, some emerging idea that’s only happened in the modern era, & to some degree, that’s true: without the discovery of hormones (turn of the last century) and the development of surgeries (middle of the last century), it is much more difficult for people to live in a body that’s wrongly gendered.
But that, however, is only for the people who require medical intervention. There have always been bodies that bridge male and female, that express secondary sex characteristics of both. Evidence:
How fantastic is she? At the very least, when some moralizing pundit talks about trans or intersex as some kind of new perversity, and a sign that the world is coming to an end, we can at least point out that it’s a very old perversity indeed. Most perversions are. We don’t invent much, but instead mostly forget, or otherwise bury some histories and identities and pretend they never did exist. (For the record, for those of you who aren’t careful readers: I do not think trans or intersex is a perversion.I am employing rhetoric in order to make my point clear. Civil and cultural recognition of trans and intersex identities and bodies is a sign of civilization, to me.)
But they did exist. This piece is not on display, but owned by the Louvre, yet this other one is on display, and in my opinion, far more sensual. Museum stats below the break.
Posted by – September 1, 2010
I miss mine, to be honest. Glad to hear not all women with smaller busts are constantly trying to make it all bigger, or to make it appear bigger, even.
With all the hormones in our food, it’s going to be the rare (& so more valued thing) for women to have small breasts soon, anyway.
Posted by – August 30, 2010
We’ve got London Fog paring Christina Hendricks (Mad Men) down to size.
Which puts my “yay, the future!” optimism on hold. Because it’s always been okay for skinny white guys to do whatever they want, while women, and actual gay men, will continue to deal with this bullshit.
Okay, someone send me a story that cheers me up again.
Posted by – July 22, 2010
I had a friend do a translation of the text that accompanies the photo:
Lea, Born Again.
New top model alert: in this fall’s Givenchy campaign, Lea is standing, in feathers, close to Mariacarla, Malgosia and Joan Smalls. With hollow cheeks and faded eyebrows, she exudes a beauty that is regal, detached, retro, and androgynous, something between Greta Garbo and Candy Darling. Lea T., the sensation of fall 2010, is the new star of the agency Women. A woman to be [or possibly “a woman in the process of becoming”], born Leo, she decided to tame life in high heels. Originally from Belo Horizonte, she grew up a well-educated boy in both Brazil and Italy, in a respected Catholic family. With two sisters and a brother, Leo was destined for a career in veterinary medicine, up to the day when Lea appeared: “I met Riccardo Tisci, who had just come out of Central Saint Martins (College of Art and Design). Little by little, we became friends. And, one night, he encouraged me to wear high heels to a party. We went to buy drag queen shoes and also bleached my eyebrows. It was a revelation.” Lea followed her pygmalion/mentor to Givenchy in Paris and worked there as his assistant, confidante, and fitting model for two seasons. Back in Milan, she decided to start her physical metamorphosis, a treatment that was met with public prejudice and immense familial unease. “It was like a war inside my head,” she says. From Paris, Riccardo followed the ups and downs of the change. He offered help and “one day, he called to ask me to pose for a Mert & Marcus ad.” Lea accepted in the name of all her transsexual friends, a standard bearer for their cause, and “especially proud of her friendship with Riccardo.” Since that ad campaign, casting and interview offers rain on Piero Piazzi, Lea’s agent at Women, “another of my guardian angels.” Lea, with disarming simplicity, explains that she is waiting for the definitive intervention that will liberate her femininity, “as soon as the papers are finalized.” She is open to her future, be it on the runway, or perhaps in the fashion studio/workshop, or back home, her true birthplace, Brazil.
I think it’s cool, & I’m glad she did it, though I know some of you are burnt out on people using trans bodies as this week’s shock factor. I don’t think this one is doing that, even though it’s confrontational because she’s looking right at you, the viewer. It’s impossible not to see her as a person (unless you’re the kind of person who dehumanizes any naked woman). Thoughts?
Posted by – January 30, 2010
Saturday is a good day to talk about vaginas, no? AlterNet seems to think so, with this lovely article about all the stuff the health & beauty industry thinks is wrong with yours, & how they can fix it: with surgery, bleach, dye, douches, deodorant, & mints. Yes, mints. They did forget one recent beauty aid, however:
Problem: Your vagina is plain.
Really, folks, you can get your beaver bejeweled now with tiny crystals to make it glitter like a disco ball.
That’s pretty much 7 quick paths to a yeast infection. None of these procedures is ever encouraged by anyone with a legitimate medical degree, and most of them can cause serious harm. Regular bathing & cotton panties may seem so old-fashioned, but it’s still what the best-kept vaginas are wearing.
(h/t to Diane for the vajazzling)
Posted by – January 21, 2010
Who knew? But watch for the guys with regular bodies during the Superbowl (where it might be otherwise unclear that we are not engineering masculinity these days).
Posted by – December 18, 2009
There’s a great video about how women’s bodies are represented in media that was just brought to my attention. It’s in Italian with English subtitles and worth watching. That said, some of the images are really upsetting (and all were broadcast on Italian television).