Monday, July 26, 2010

Is Curvy Christina Hendricks A Role Model?

A British Minister (government rather than religious), Lynne Featherstone, has spoken out against skinny women and said that Christian Hendricks, the curvaceous actress best known for playing Joan in Mad Men, is a much better role model for women.

Curvy Christina Hendricks is 'fabulous' role model says equalities minister - The Telegraph

True, but her body shape is as unrealistic and unattainable for most women as that of many models. The key to Hendricks' much admired figure is that her extra weight goes to her curves (not just her stomach and thighs), and that she remains in proportion. And where the weight goes on is more to do with genetics than anything else - one can starve oneself into 'thin' but one cannot control where fat is deposited ...

I think it's more natural for women to have bodies like Hendricks than Kate Moss, and larger sizes are to be encouraged, but ... I doubt the 'trend' will catch on.

A couple of years ago I blogged about dying my hair brown, a post which for some reason remains very popular, so I'm going to get personal and talk about my weight. My conclusion about the whole men date blondes but marry brunettes debate was that very few people noticed (and those that did were women, not men), and that it made no difference. My boyfriend at the time didn't even notice.

One can change hair color in an instant,  but not weight. My weight has however been all over the place recently. Last summer I checked myself in to be treated for PTSD, and I was a rake - dangerously underweight, unable to fit most clothes in shops (wearing 26 jeans at 5'9" is not normal, or at least it shouldn't be). I was told by doctors to put on weight, and I did. I regularly ate a whole banoffee pie, and not surprisingly I gained over 30 pounds ... which was probably excessive, although I'm lucky that like Hendricks it goes to my curves. At both weights I had in theory a 'normal' BMI, but I felt fat with the weight gain and was far too skinny with the weight loss, which suggests that the BMI tables are seriously flawed. I've since lost a bit of the gains my eating normally and hopefully will settle back to somewhere in between.

So did the way men treated me change? No. If anything, when I walk down the street I have far more builders call out greetings and compliments when I'm at my maximum weight than at my minimum. And far more men talk to my cleavage when I'm overweight ... But women were another story - the very back-handed compliments, the  'advice' and the general bitchy comments ... I've no idea if fat is a feminist issue, but it's one that works up the feminine of the species to spew venom.

5 comments:

Purslane said...

I've long wondered about your extended silence on this blog--thank you for explaining. I hope the worst of that is all over, though I imagine you still have very difficult moments. As to curves, I imagine that the influence of classist attitudes can make members of the elite more fascinated by skinny plus boobs while construction workers are wont to appreciate butt plus boobs. Who knows. Few men are likely to ignore completely a lovely curvy body.

Anonymous said...

I am not gay but I think a voluptuous woman is beautiful, more so than the stick skinny or the female who starves herself or is bulimic to be a 0-2 size. Please. You are a realistic looking beautiful woman. Glad to see you representing for the rest of us. My sister started off anorexic, then turned to bulimia then had her gall bladder removed because it stopped working completely. She has lied to drs for years(Iknow I've had to take her to the Dr. when she was sick) Dr. asked me if I thought she was anorexic I told him no because she eats more than me. She excuses herself to the restroom after every meal to throw up N brush her teeth; but she's a size 0-2. She falls ALOT, sick alot, no I'm not jealous I'm built more like Christina. If I get to skinny I get sick. I eat healthy, work out and love being voluptuous- I look younger than I am too. Go Christina!!!

AGUS said...

some skinny women are beautiful, some fat women are beautiful...period.

Anonymous said...

from a constuction worker: Curves.......

Anonymous said...

Oh yeah, it's such a blessing to be busty, what with the shoulder grooves and back pain.... Why is it always about "beauty" and not ever about "healthy" and "happy?"

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