Join Date: July 2005
Re: More on the Ralph Lauren controversy
Here's an appropriately angry new article about the Ralph Lauren fiasco:
What I like about it is that the author understands that this incident is not some kind of outlier for the fashion industry, but rather indicative of just how truly dysfunctional and destructive it is:
"Digitally altered." Thereís a nice way to sanitize it.
Why not just call a spade a spade and say the model, Filippa Hamilton, was disfigured by the Photoshop magic?
The words slashed and sliced come to mind, too.
My second thought was: "Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I rest my case."
This image is proof that the fashion industry really does want to turn women into in an army of Toothpick People.
I mean, what are models anyway, if not role models for women, beauty and fashion? If these models are inhumanly thin, then what exactly is the message to women (and girls) at whom these images are pitched?
My third thought was this: good.
No really. This absurd image is the best thing to hit the fashion industry in a long time.
In years to come, Photoshopgate will be viewed as the moment when the harsh white light was shone on the lie and truth of this industry.
The lie is that these uber-thin women are even possible. They are not. Filippaís image is a visual lie perpetrated by the fashion industry, which used Photoshop to do its fibbing.
Even scarier is the truth. And that is that Filippaís distorted image really does represent the apex of female "beauty" as far as the fashion industry is concerned.
When itís not possible for models to achieve this ideal through starving and purging, the industry simply doctors up the images to create the emaciated waif they want to display their fashions.
The response from Ralph Lauren was telling. The clothing line apologized, not for the sickly thinness of the model in the image, but for the poor Photoshopping.
In other words, it said sorry because the lie wasnít good enough. Now thereís a truth for you.
Itís time to unravel this ridiculous notion that emaciation is chic, that Size 00 is meaningful and that itís fashionable to look like a malnourished heroin addict or famine victim.
Fashion models are freakishly thin. They starve, they purge, they even die in pursuit of the insatiable demand for thinness.
This Photoshopped image is an embarrassment, not just to the designer Ralph Lauren, but to an entire industry thatís been pummelled with this criticism for years.
And rather than make real changes, the industryís swatted these criticisms blithely aside
The last point is the crucial one- the industry does not, and will not, change on its own, no matter how much the public condemns it. One or two token faux-plus models in one or two token shows a year is nothing compared to the thousands of magazine covers and thousands of shows with thousands of androgynous, anorexic models.
It is intolerable that this industry is allowed to continue ruining women's lives. And the horror will
continue, until government legislation puts a stop to it.