Posted by: MC | May 7, 2013

DIY Fashion Statement

Facebook 5-7-2013 -  Anna Goodman

So, one of the features of being human is having a body.  You may have noticed.  Related to that is necessity, both climactic and social, of finding ways to cover, to clothe.  The practical act of clothing keeps people from freezing in winter and can provide a bit of cooling in the heat of summer.  The social act if covering the body may most joyously take on artistry with adornment being a way of celebrating one’s life-form in the company of others.  Everyone adorned in her or his own way — everyone enjoying the art of individual expression.

Enter competitiveness — descriptive comparison gone mean like the difference in “your body is long and straight and yours is curvy” and “your body is beautiful and yours isn’t.”   Going mean supports and is perpetuated by competitive economic interests that benefit from consumers who will pay to feel better about the way they’ve come deeply to believe they aren’t enough.  The fashion, diet, and exercise industries flourish in this contortion of of meaning and value with regard to human bodies.  The more we-the-people find ourselves falling short physically, the better capitalized are those particular economic units.  I can imagine the argument, but I doubt I’ll ever buy the reasoning that economic well being trumps physical, mental and spiritual health.

Over recent months, I’ve had the opportunity to work with two young scholars on an article that considers the identity development of kids in schools next to the national hue and cry attached to the word, “obesity.”  As we get closer to finishing and submitting our work, I’ll likely revisit some of our conclusions here in a bit more detail.  For today, I’d just like to call out fat phobia and any other kind of body-shape fanaticism as major distractions from the dignity and worth of all people.

The photo for this week says it well.  Short – sweet – to the point:  Listen to people in bodies, and if you’re one of them, love the body you’re in.

It’s been said and said, but the chances are so remote that stardust would combine to make you or anyone that a whole load of awe is in order.  Sure you want to take good care of the body carrying this one wild and precious life.  Do that.  And on the way, don’t wait another moment to join the spirit of the author of this photo.  No matter what anyone says about what’s beautiful, you are.  That’s just the way it is.  But don’t believe me — you see if there’s really any reason not to know that your beauty and worth are truer than true.

Wear what feels good.

Have some fun.

Listen to people.  Listen to yourself.

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Responses

  1. Hi Ms. M. 🙂
    Something in this last entry spoke to me. I recently read a letter from an indigenous woman in Canada to Eve Ensler, very bluntly naming her work as ignorant of indigenous women’s issues. It was a tough read.
    I thought of her story as I read your blog entries, and found myself wishing that you had said more about the socioeconomic privilege that intersects the issue of body image.
    That poster made me smile, and I also know myself as someone who can read, is in a positive family/home situation, is educated, and has the ability to buy a bikini. I want to know more about your thoughts regarding this intersection of socioeconomic privilege and body image. I wonder if it would be so easy to pick up the spirit of the author of the poster if I was being abused, or if I was struggling with money or housing, etc. it’s not so easy sometimes to just love the body we were born in. Your blog is so light and fun, and also reminded me of how much of a privilege it is to be able to be light and fun.

    Cheers, and I appreciate what I learn about myself in reading your blog.


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