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The Exotic made mundane - Elf M. Sternberg
The Exotic made mundane
One of the things that comes up a lot in The Journal Entries, especially as the series goes on, is the way human beings deal with otherness or its lack. David Brin once entitled a collection of short stories he wrote with that title, but most of his stuff involved gee-whiz alienness. I think human beings by themselves, even in the absence of aliens, need otherness, something against which they compare themselves. In the universe where much of humanity's difference could have been smeared out into a this layer of common values and general tolerance, there will always be a group that seeks to define itself as not part of that layer for no other reason than because they believe that "something better," often an ill-defined something, can only be achieved through the adoption of values that are often distinctly different.

I was reminded of this when I came upon an article for Miss Artifical Beauty, a beauty pageant organized in response to one woman being expelled from the Miss China contest because she had had plastic surgery. The idea here was that plastic surgeons could show off the best examples of their work.

The winner caught my eye simply because one of her traits was that she had had her eyes and nose westernized. Apparently, the slightly softer nose and eyes with an epicanthic fold are very popular options over there. I think Feng Qian is a pretty woman, after four surgeries, but she looks odd. She looks like she's bought into the notion that exotic is pretty, and has modified herself to be exotic. For her, exotica is western.

When everyone looks the same, the desire is to be different. Wider eyes and bigger lips are 'in' this year in China. Well, at least they don't come out looking like this (warning, this image not safe for work).

Current Mood: thoughtful thoughtful

5 comments or Leave a comment
talisker From: talisker Date: December 20th, 2004 04:15 am (UTC) (Link)
Sorry to intrude, but what in blazes is that website? An asian realdoll that you can rent?
elfs From: elfs Date: December 20th, 2004 04:48 am (UTC) (Link)
Yes. By the hour. Extra for delivery, but they promise to be discreet.
talisker From: talisker Date: December 20th, 2004 04:51 am (UTC) (Link)
That's what I thought, but I couldn't really be sure.

Um, ew?

Unless they autoclave those suckers, there's no way to be sure they're clean...
elfs From: elfs Date: December 20th, 2004 10:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
Ah, I see. If you read the fine print, part of the rental price is the purchase of a fresh, new "sex module," which is basically the sleeve between her legs. It seems somewhat, shall we say, presumptuous for them to assume that you want to do the doll one way and one way only, but at least they're trying to be accomodating.
talisker From: talisker Date: December 21st, 2004 06:13 am (UTC) (Link)
Google's beta translation software can only do so much :P I missed that part :)
5 comments or Leave a comment