According to Vanessa Friedman, a writer for the Style section of ft.com "If we get used to seeing all kinds of bodies, all kinds of bodies will lose their stigmas. It won't solve all eating disorder problems but it might stop this endless debate. Then we could get into some really meaty topics."
In her article she reflects on her earlier years in writing, telling of one of her earliest assignments, to spend a weekend in the Hamptons with 10 young models, new to the business, all of whom were an average 15/16 years old. She claims that despite their good health, "what struck [her] at the time was their absolutely bizarre physical reality."
She then goes on to speak about the pledge that the 19 international Vogues made to "not knowingly work with models under the age of 16 or who appear to have an eating disorder.." and about the magazines' editorials in their June issues, which focus on healthy eating habits and lifestyles. She argues that the editorials wouldn't be seen as a promotion of healthy living, unless one were looking for a promotion of healthy lifestyles. Basically we should use all sorts of models in the fashion industry, just as much as skinny models to prevent the constant debate that is the size of models of the fashion world.
Personally, I understand her argument, but at the same time I just can't agree with it. I'm a person who likes traditionalism in certain cases, and I think that while it is absolutely brilliant to ensure that a model is healthy and of appropriate age, totally changing the criteria for one to be a model is too much for me. Of course, there should be petite and plus sized and average sized models, but the truth is that since the beginning of time, a standard criteria has been maintained when it comes to the dimensions of supermodels. Why should we break that criteria now for the sake of an insecure generation? If the criteria was the same several years prior, and the problems of eating disorders were not nearly as serious as they are today (I have no evidence that they were or weren't - I'm only assuming), why are we deeming the tradition the problem, rather than how the population is now? Is it that we've become too accustomed to obesity, whether extreme or slight, that being naturally skinny, or a little skinnier that normal is a total anomaly? Understand that I'm in noway condoning any form of malnutrition or eating disorder, I'm just questioning why it seems as though the world finds more fault in being anorexic or bulimic than in being obese, if both are forms of malnutrition.
What do you all think of Vanessa Friedman's post of ft.com. Here's the link, read it and tell me how you feel! Maybe I'm being biased because I'm naturally skinny, and because those around me seem to react in this manner to naturally skinny models, especially in a country where being thicker in the right places is ideal?