What’s Really Behind The Ridicule Of Renée Zellweger’s Face
The performative surprise, disgust, and shame directed toward aging is super contradictory: It suggests that the ideal woman is young and without wrinkles, but attempts by women to maintain that ideal are subject to derision.
It’s not that women shouldn’t get plastic surgery; it’s that they should make every effort for that surgery to be invisible, seamless, unnoticeable. Good plastic surgery is OK, but “bad” plastic surgery — surgery that makes itself visible — now that’s abject.
Why? Because it shows that the work of performing ideal femininity is just that: work. And ideal femininity never illuminates itself as a construction; it must present itself as “natural.” Which is also why it comes as such a surprise when someone like Beyoncé speaks openly about the exhaustive regimen necessary to get her body into post-baby shape: It speaks truth to the lie of the effortless, immaculate, eternally young and fit female form.