Thursday, August 13, 2015

when a Vogue cover is construed as a political statement at The Atlantic ...

http://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2015/08/beyonce-hair-on-vogue-september-issue-cover/401246/
...
And here is the most powerful female celebrity on the planet, on the cover of the biggest issue of what is arguably the world’s most important fashion magazine, seeming to push back against all that. Bey and Vogue are not necessarily recommending that the Normals of the world start rocking stringy hair. What they are doing, though, is what all high fashion will, in the end: They’re setting a new benchmark. They’re suggesting that unkempt hair, Cerulean sweater-style, can and maybe even should trickle down to the habits of Vogue’s readers and admirers and newsstand-passersby. They’re making a political statement disguised as an aesthetic one. Here is Beyoncé, whose brand is strong enough to withstand being photographed with stringy hair, suggesting that, for the rest of us, the best hairdos might be the ones that don’t require all the doing
 
But that might be because of the strength of the brand permitting an alpha female in a contemporary society to get away with stringy hair because everything else looks picture-perfect. 
 
To be sure, there's an equivalent of this kind of thing for guys, maybe fantasy football?  Maybe debating whether it would be Captain America or Wolverine who would win a fight?  The political statement seems more about Beyoncé's brand than about what may ever be true about any other women ... but maybe that's just a guy's take on this.

Then again, let's revisit what Amanda Hess wrote a while back at Slate:

Beyoncé is the living embodiment of diversifying beauty standards for women in America, but in many ways, she now is the standard, and it’s still an unattainable one.

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