Beyond Beauty and the Beast: A Debate on Love, Gender, and Consent
The title of this passage, Beauty and the Beast, gives the reader the impression that this passage is going to be more casual than some of the other Longman Reader reading assignments that we have had. This passage, written by Dave Barry, is just that. The passage is informative and educational, but on more of a casual level than a serious one. Barry originally published Beauty and the Beast, in the Miami Herald, in 1998. The article is about how women care more about their looks than men do. It gives examples to support its thesis throughout the article. “If you’re a man, at some point a woman will ask you how she looks.
How do I look? She’ll ask. ”(370) Barry opens his article with this statement; this immediately informs the reader that the article is going to discuss how women care about their looks. In the fifth paragraph, when talking about men, Berry writes, “their primary form of beauty is to shave themselves… If, at the end of his four-minute daily beauty regimen, a man has managed to wipe most of the shaving cream out of his hair and is not bleeding too badly, he feels that he has done all he can, so he stops thinking about his appearance. ”(370-371) with these two examples given, Berry illustrates the contrast between how men do not care so much about how they look, but how women do. Berry just supported his thesis by giving examples. Berry did not stop supporting his thesis there; he then goes on to give expert “psychological and societal reasons” as well. (371)Some theories that people believe in, that could be why women care more about their looks than men, start in childhood. Berry states examples such as when females are growing up they play with Barbie dolls. The concept of a Barbie doll is to imitate a human that has impeccable looks and it is the responsibility of the child to brush the doll and keep her looking up to professional fashion standards.
On the converse end of this situation, males go through their childhood playing with action figures. These action figures are not designed to care about looks, but to care more about acting tough and being brave. Their names portray something that is cool and brave, such as the example that Berry gave, “Buzz-Off. ” When little boys are playing with “Buzz-Off,” little girls are play with Barbie, which is a name of something that is neat and clean. This article is very informative. It sheds light on a subject that people do not give much thought to, but when they stop to think about it, they do wonder why there is such a different conception of care of looking beautiful among the two genders. This article points out some reasons to why this might be, by identifying the thesis, giving examples to support the thesis, and then giving reasons to why people feel the way they do on the subject.