Arn't I A Woman?: Women and Bodies



Jan 20, 2012

Women and Bodies

I like that women's bodies come in so many different variations. I love celebrating that. I love loving yourself no matter what your body looks like. That's a tough pill to swallow for a lot of people. But we make this weird division/ polarization; skinny or fat. Like that's even real? People are people. We should let people be themselves. I forget where I heard this, but there's this great quote about how the most authentic thing you can do for the world is to be genuine to who you are. I believe that we put a lot of weird pressure on women and how their bodies look, and it has nothing to do with anything except for vanity.
Even words like "thick" and "curvy" become questionable. What do you mean by that? Because maybe these adjectives presume otherness. I think when you create an incredibly narrow definition of what is normal, it will inevitably exclude a large segment of the population. Necessitating a particular mode of attractiveness as better/worse is provincial. Bodies vary from person to person. I only write this because of the INSANE emphasis on women and their bodies in American society. There's a lot to say. But I feel like there is more left unsaid. It's beyond that 'women be proud of your bodies' shit. Do men have to be proud of their bodies? Much less than women do. The inherent importance of the physical body in women compared to men automatically shows a difference of importance. I don't mean to say that men can't/don't have issues with their bodies because that is absolutely real as well. I speak only as a woman, and with experiences I have with myself and my body and the public. And I think shit is pretty fucked.

1 comment:

  1. I agree. Very well said and I love your blog! Keep it up and how do I follow you? In the sixties, there was a "natural" movement...women began wearing less or no makeup, no bras, some went as far as not shaving...sometimes it went too far but the point was that women were freeing themselves & their images from the restrictive trappings of the 50s ideal of a woman. Teased, sprayed hairdos, pointed aggressor bras, tight uncomfortable girdles all with the intent of smoothing, changing, padding, hiding, accentuating all fell away to reveal the true woman & her beauty inside & out. One of the better societal evolutions of the sixties, I think. Aretha's "Natural Woman"...thus the sexual revolution began in earnest.


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Sojourner Truth

Well, children, where there is so much racket there must be something out of kilter. I think that 'twixt the negroes of the South and the women at the North, all talking about rights, the white men will be in a fix pretty soon. But what's all this here talking about?

That man over there says that women need to be helped into carriages, and lifted over ditches, and to have the best place everywhere. Nobody ever helps me into carriages, or over mud-puddles, or gives me any best place! And ain't I a woman? Look at me! Look at my arm! I have ploughed and planted, and gathered into barns, and no man could head me! And ain't I a woman? I could work as much and eat as much as a man - when I could get it - and bear the lash as well! And ain't I a woman? I have borne thirteen children, and seen most all sold off to slavery, and when I cried out with my mother's grief, none but Jesus heard me! And ain't I a woman?

Then they talk about this thing in the head; what's this they call it? [member of audience whispers, "intellect"] That's it, honey. What's that got to do with women's rights or negroes' rights? If my cup won't hold but a pint, and yours holds a quart, wouldn't you be mean not to let me have my little half measure full?

Then that little man in black there, he says women can't have as much rights as men, 'cause Christ wasn't a woman! Where did your Christ come from? Where did your Christ come from? From God and a woman! Man had nothing to do with Him.

If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these women together ought to be able to turn it back , and get it right side up again! And now they is asking to do it, the men better let them.

Obliged to you for hearing me, and now old Sojourner ain't got nothing more to say.

Sojourner Truth

Delivered 1851 at the Women's Convention

Akron, Ohio