Quickhit: That Jennifer Hawkins magazine cover

Body image foundation defends nude Jennifer Hawkins cover

Categories: arts & entertainment, media


12 replies

  1. Regular bodies don’t sell? Tell that to Glamor magazine in the US.

  2. I understand what they’re trying to say – we all know we non-model women have “flaws”, we need to know that pretty people have “flaws” too – but their approach is a bit flawed, too, since they picked a woman with few to no flaws as far as most women are concerned. This cover basically will say to most women “see? models look great even without airbrushing”, which doesn’t really help women with body image issues.
    A model who is older, with softer folds might be better than a young woman who has not had many of the body-changing events that life hands us. Like I said, I understand what they were trying for, but…
    But yes, there is a market for beautiful women who are more than a size 0 who model – that we do want to see, since it gives even women with healthy self-images a better idea of what the clothes look like on slightly larger sizes, and in the US at least, women want to see that.
    The subtext, of course, is that the male gaze doesn’t want to see “average” women, even in women’s magazines.

  3. How much progress are we women making – it’s 2010? Not much. I looked at the video/cover and to me it looked like an advert promoting eating disorders because: it’s obvious, the model is thin and pretty….It was my impression that women’s magazines were for women, silly me all these years… There’s some good photos online of how real women look, although women with physical disabilities have not been included in a site I like, but am unable to edit/copy/paste. There’s the worship of large breasts in the USA, as well.

  4. Clem Bastow has a piece in The Age about it: Dye v Hawkins: a fatuous argument over slim women.

  5. Another piece, by Melinda Tankard Reist , in The Australian: Mags’ flawed obsession with body perfect.

  6. Yep. I’d like to give that editor a quick hit, too.

  7. I lurve (by which I mean “hate”) the way the woman on the radio interview thinks it’s great men aren’t negatively affected – yeah, they’re pictures of extremely rare near-perfect women. If both women and men’s magazines only had cover photos of Adonises, watch men get body image problems.

  8. Way off topic, but when I use sciptblocker, I can see half a page of spam text above the normal content. Mainly names of pharmaceuticals.

  9. Sanda, I suggest you take a look at Clem Barstow’s piece that Deborah linked to. Talking about “real women” isn’t particularly helpful.

  10. It’s interesting how the supposed ‘solution’ to a thin-centric culture is to show more ‘natural’, ‘real’ or ‘average’ pictures of women; the implication being that the ‘natural’, ‘real’ and what is ‘average’ are things that should be unquestionably valued. Who determines what is ‘natural’ and what is ‘real’ and what is ‘average’? And further, who determines that these are good things to be? This is kinda important, seeing as what is ‘natural’/ ‘real’/’average’ are subjective value judgments, rather than pre-existing ‘truths’.
    One of the problems with using this kind of language, is that for many people there are a lot of connotations associated with ‘average’ bodies; many will imagine a white, able-bodied, cis etc. etc. body…. And so we are somehow supposed to think it is a feministic act, when journos and radio hosts ( for example) go around saying that ‘natural’/’average’/’real’ bodies are GOOD, whilst ‘unnatural’/’non-average’/’unreal’ bodies are BAD. That kind of propaganda isn’t good, seeing as it encourages things like infighting, whilst diverting energy away from properly confronting fatphobia (and abelist etc. discourses that arise from the valuing of what is ‘average’ or supposedly ‘natural’).
    Oh and the circular logic that Julie Parker spun about how Marie Claire just HAD TO use Jennifer Hawkins, because she JUST HAPPENS to be a supermodel, and would therefore apparently ‘raise more awareness’ is a *headdesk* too. To see the General Manager of an organisation that is meant to be ‘supporting people with eating disorders’, use a ‘well that is just the way things are’ logic is just disturbing

  11. caffeineaddict, I agree completely. The language around women’s bodies is beyond problematic – even when supposedly subverting the paradigm, they enforce it, saying that only one type of body is proper. As long as a beauty standard is enforced, the image industry will hide behind “well, this is what women want to see”. The ultimate goal is to make women hate their bodies for not fitting what the image makers say it should be (Dove’s “Campaign for Real Beauty” highlighted this by completely buying into the current ideas about beauty, simply changing the sizes a bit).
    We need to get away from the idea that mainstream physical attractiveness is the only true measure of women’s worth.

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