Read e-book online Beauty and Misogyny Harmful Cultural Practices in the West PDF

By Sheila Jeffreys

ISBN-10: 0203698568

ISBN-13: 9780203698563

ISBN-10: 0415351839

ISBN-13: 9780415351836

Should western good looks practices, starting from lipstick to labiaplasty, be incorporated in the United countries understandings of damaging traditional/cultural practices? via analyzing the position of universal good looks practices in harmful the health and wellbeing of girls, developing sexual distinction, and imposing woman deference, this booklet argues that they should.

In the Nineteen Seventies feminists criticized pervasive good looks regimes corresponding to weight loss plan and depilation, yet a few ‘new’ feminists argue that good looks practices are not any longer oppressive now that ladies can ‘choose’ them. even though, within the final 20 years the brutality of western attractiveness practices turns out to became even more critical, requiring the breaking of pores and skin, spilling of blood and rearrangement or amputation of physique elements. Beauty and Misogyny seeks to make feel of why good looks practices are usually not in simple terms simply as continual, yet in lots of methods extra severe. It examines the pervasive use of make-up, the misogyny of favor and high-heeled footwear, and appears on the function of pornography within the production of more and more well known attractiveness practices similar to breast implants, genital waxing and surgical alteration of the labia. It seems to be on the plastic surgery and physique piercing/cutting industries as being kinds of self-mutilation by means of proxy, within which the surgeons and piercers function proxies to hurt women’s our bodies, and concludes via contemplating how a tradition of resistance to those practices will be created.

This crucial paintings will entice scholars and lecturers of feminist psychology, gender experiences, cultural reviews, and feminist sociology at either undergraduate and postgraduate degrees, and to an individual with an curiosity in feminism, ladies and wonder, and women’s health.

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Extra info for Beauty and Misogyny Harmful Cultural Practices in the West (Women and Psychology)

Sample text

W E S T E R N C U L T U R E P R O V I D E S ` ` C H O I C E' ' ? Harmful cultural practices are seen as existing in cultures in which women do not have choice. The idea that ``chosen'' harmful traditional practices can be distinguished from forced ones does not ®t well with United Nations understanding of what constitutes such a practice. The notion of harmful cultural practices is based on the idea that culture can enforce and that women and girls are not free agents able to pick and choose. In the 1990s in the west, however, the ideology of western liberalism, and the economic systems of laissez-faire individualist capitalism defended by it, were potent forces in the deracination of political critiques that recognize inequality and oppression as constructing limits to choice and opportunity (see Jeffreys, 1997b).

Harmful cultural or traditional practices in UN terms are identi®ed as: being harmful to the health of women and girls; arising from the material power differences between the sexes; being for the bene®t of men; creating stereotyped masculinity and femininity which damage the opportunities of women and girls; being justi®ed by tradition. This de®nition is well suited to beauty practices in the west such as cosmetic surgery. The concept enables the culture of male domination in which women live to be brought into focus and subjected to criticism instead of being regarded as natural, inevitable or even progressive.

Makeup is not enforced with such brutality in western cultures. However, as Homa Hoodfar points out, the veil may be worn for different reasons in different countries and even within the same country (Hoodfar, 1997). In some situations no obvious force is applied. Lama Abu-Odeh describes the readoption of the veil. She says that in the 1970s women ``walked the streets of Arab cities wearing western attire: skirts and dresses below the knee, high heels, and sleeves that covered the upper arm 38 HARMFUL CULTURAL PRACTICES AND WESTERN CULTURE in the summer.

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Beauty and Misogyny Harmful Cultural Practices in the West (Women and Psychology) by Sheila Jeffreys

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