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Kaitlynn
22nd August 2007, 14:56
I accidentally stumbled across a proposal for a novel at this livejournal account the other day,

http://s0kate.livejournal.com/

and was very much taken by the writer's conception of the female lead. Just listen to how unmodern, how much of a timeless beauty, this character seems:

Gylleaen (Gill-A-an) Rioghan (Ree-an, means 'queen' in Irish mythology): (MC) creamy white skin, ruby red lips, dark-rimmed green eyes, black hair; quiet...often appears snobbish or unkind, but this is more a defense mechanism than anything else, as is her quick and undying dry wit. Mother died on Gylleaen's sixteenth birthday. Is extremely good-looking and knows it, uses it to her advantage. Often gets what she wants, but is not whiny...Is not liked by women generally, as they are often intimidated by and jealous of her. Moved from the city of Dublin in Ireland just after her mother's death to Cambridge, Massachusetts when her father took a position at Harvard University in the history department. Went to Tufts University. Rather curvy, voluptuous...Full lips, hips, breasts, etc.

Maybe looks a bit like Kate Dillon with dark hair and green eyes...Or Natalie Laughlin.
Amazing, no? She has many of the attributes that are celebrated as hallmarks of timeless beauty:
-Irish
-aristocratic
-vain
-fair-skinned
-aware of her own beauty, and revels in it
-inspires envy in other women
-curvy, with "full" features (obviously self-indulgent)

That's a pretty exciting character--or rather, proposed character. What I like about her is that she's powerfully feminine, without being the least bit androgynous or mannish (she's the kind of lady that feminists have always resented).

I would sooner have imagined her with blonde hair (Shannon Marie!), but no matter what, it's an amazing idea. I just wish this book had already been written, rather than being merely an idea.

What's especially significant that this author has plus-size models in mind when he/she devised the idea for this character (although I could imagine even better models for inspiration). Or to put it another way, if it hadn't been for the public visibility of plus-size models, the author would never have dreamed of such a character in the first place.

Ergo, if there were more plus-size models, and if they had more visibility, then cultural creators (authors, screenwriters, directors, etc.) would conceive of characters like this more often. The relative absence of plus-size beauty from mass consciousness is a kind of pre-emptive censorship that prevents full-figured women from being presented in exciting, idealized ways such as this.

Hopefully, this is a sign that a different (unmodern, timeless) notion of feminine beauty is slowly returning to public awareness.

HSG
10th October 2007, 14:25
I would sooner have imagined her with blonde hair (Shannon Marie!), but no matter what, it's an amazing idea.
What is most refreshing about the author's conception of this character is that she isn't presented as any kind of self-pitying victim, but as the exact opposite--an excitingly spoiled, indulged princess, whose beauty and femininity give her almost limitless power.

This is the most important criterion for creating compelling female characters. It doesn't matter one iota whether they are "good" or "evil." Whether a plus-size female character is the sweetest of angels, or the most treacherous of seductresses, she can be a great boon to size-celebration--so long as her physical beauty is indisputable, and as long as she exhibits a heady dose of vanity about her goddesslike appearance.

Where more characters such as this "Irish princess" appear in books, films, and television, the timeless ideal of Classical beauty will regain its cultural dominance.

Shannon Marie--still the loveliest of all Irish goddesses, and the most gorgeous of plus-size models.<p><center><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/sh/sh37a.jpg"></center><p>(Modelling for Fashion Bug, several seasons ago.)