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Beth Ditto Calls Modeling Industry 'Brutal'

Illustration for article titled Beth Ditto Calls Modeling Industry Brutal

Beth Ditto, lead singer of The Gossip, is at it again! This week, reports The Independent, she calls the modeling industry a "brutal business that relies on a beauty standard achieved by 0.00008 per cent of women," and points out that females today are "bombarded with photos of girls with bodies that so, so, so few have, in clothes that will never fit and that you will never be able to afford." Ditto also seems to be miffed by the lack of talent most models and celebrities have.

"No one shows you a photo of 'Mama' Cass and says, 'See? She's a genius and had an amazing music career'. Or a painting by Frida Kahlo and says, 'You can be a revolutionary with vision and a unibrow, and not only will you be loved, worshipped and acclaimed, but you will be remembered for work, timeless and outstanding'."

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Some commenters have blasted Ditto for not being "healthy," but what do you call this attitude? Someone considers her thoughts worthwhile: she has an advice column in the Guardian. Beth's recommendation to someone who's "just broken up with the love of my life" ? Cry, clean house, and "watch the film Funny Girl at least five times, eat at least 45 chocolate bars, and hang out with all those friends you blew off to hang out with your ex. I truly believe that, through a combination of Nutella, old pals and Barbra Streisand, we can achieve happiness and, very probably, world peace."

Ditto Hits Out At 'Brutal And Abnormal' Fashionistas [TheIndependent]
Related: What Would Beth Ditto Do? [Guardian]
Earlier: Beth Ditto: "Size Hero For The Size-Zero Age"

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DISCUSSION

@Janine: I agree with you that expanding the limits of objectification so that fat and skinny ladies are both objectified is not so progressive... But I don't think that is what Beth Ditto is doing. First and foremost she is a rock singer! She wants ladies to be evaluated on their talents, not their looks. Thats why she coached young girls at the rock n' roll camp for girls, and thats what inspired her talk about Frida Khalo & Mama Cass. The Gossip has been making music since 2000-2001; she isn't some reality star or celebutante who only got famous for being "fat & proud".

But thats how the media has spun her, as she gets more famous her comments about size & weight get repeated over and over... but if you follow all her quotes, she talks a lot about class, homophobia, sexism, racisim, politics, she's equally opinionated on many other things.

Perez just caught onto her awesomeness last year, its not like she is riding his coattails! Her fame has been growing since The Gossip toured with Sleater-Kinney in 2001.

I think its radical to be proud of your body when the world acts like it is something to be ashamed of. True people diss super-skinny celebs but the media just ignores or ridicules fat people. It takes a ton of guts to make it as a lady in rock music, let alone a fat lady! She is opening so many doors that have seemed closed for so many people. And how do we know if she is healthy or not? I've seen her live, dancing onstage a few times, and you've got to be in shape to dance as much as she does, while singing, for an hour or more straight, night after night. Maybe she is unhealthy in some ways, but so are people all across the weight spectrum. And its completely prejudiced to judge people based on their bodies alone.

I am wary of "fat acceptance" movements where some people might truly be hurting themselves and justifying it. But thats not what she is advocating. She is advocating pursuing your talents, doing what you love, and ignoring society telling you you're unfit for the things you want to do! Can't get much more progressive than that.