Athena's Mirror Pt 1
The flight attendant of this era some thirty years ago was required to dress a certain way and this way technically could misrepresent her against her own individual sexual will to the favor of the company imago, that image that goes before it into its marketplace. Male and female sexiness has been used to buy and sell everything under the sun and some things mother never told you about. But whether sex sells everything is questionable. Furthermore, the very idea that sex is to sell everything... still is boring the daylights out of a good many people. Objectionably and questionably every sexualized social image is being challenged right now.
Setera Quassim is not so lucky when she tries to maintain quiet as she undergoes similar public embarrassment in criticism of her personal sexiness in dress by airport fashion Nazis. Like Kyla she has had to go public and pose her plight before the national camera. Because she filed no formal complaint no “official” apology will ever be forthcoming.
Setara Quassim “no-fly” outfit
..................... Setara Quassim posing in her “scarlet letter”
Now one must give pause and realize a certain specific. These are adult young women mistreated this way. By 'mistreated' I mean treated as if they are denied the primary authority over their sexuality, sexual experiences and sexual preferences. This 'value-based' but unlawful violation to the first-amendment rights of these women is tied to a third idea and image.
This one surfaces in my local newspaper here in Arizona. It also has to do with something regarding young women, sex, the city and cover-ups. Here in Scottsdale the Valley has launched its first “Purity Ball.” The event is billed, according to the article in the Tribune, “A Call To Purity” in dress as a call to chastity. It asks daughters to pledge a cover-up of their bodies as part of a large moral movement that also asks daughters to sign a social contract as a matter of blind, religious obligation and parental pressure. The social promissory exacts sexual abstinence on their part before marriage. No doubt these two kinds of sexualizing instances regarding the covering up or the hiding of the female body are linked to the same value-based religio. Whereas the latter is a high pressure sales pitch to underaged daughters, the former is an unlawful persecution of our adult female citizenry.
And, yes! The editorial “you” (meaning me) suspects something fundamentally unconscious is being asked of these young women, something obedient in place of something thoughtful, something overtly religious in its libidinal hunt having already marked her a “too-sexy” sex to participate in the celestial imagination unless she hide from her own scrutiny the body she already wears. I am referring to her already “no-fly” earthly outfit—her very own desiring and budding libidinal imagining uniqueness, her value-(de)based yet powerfully valuable space that is both her inward as well as outward sign. This important space of signification is be-coming 'woman'. ‘Her’ marks here that mark totally to which ‘female’ signifies totally. Totally, “O”. It is a space of transparency where "she" sheds and can shed the clothing of sexualized insistencies altogether.
I will be away for a few weeks and will continue to brood. Meanwhile, you can click the link and see this third most interesting image and also read the comments of readers. It is interesting to me for two reasons. The first is the photo’s fairytale mode of presentation. It makes me think of Cinderella. That fairytale ends for real with the death of Princess Diana. I suspect this can mean the fairytale ending has changed imaginally. The princess may never again live so happily unconscious. Not now. Not ever after 911. The prince is absent, too. In his place is the graying father.
The second thing is how there is another mode of telling going on and it is not fairy tale. It is myth. It unfolds regarding sexual desire and sexual abstinence a certain attempt through literalized father-daughter relationships to cover-up a tritogenic mythoi operating in the background. It hides in that sense the knowledge of our early and acculturated human animal’s coarse savagery at work within the sexual imaginary and its symbolic function. It also hides this as always already a re-weaving or a mythopoetic space whose capabilities when worked is what shapes that ground between our taboos and real desires. The same images also hide in the other sense as covering over may mean; as in clothing or the “hide” that reveals the existence of itself and this skin made scapegoat within the aegis that operates between Athena and Zeus as law.
Athene's Mirror, Pt 2
the sweeping: Cinderella in your turn see ricwilliams.com October 3, 2007
White Stocking Tales Poetry Series:
White Stocking Tale
Marquis D'un Sa(i)d, "Every Ting Leaks!"
What Ofelia Saw
The Pale Man
One Minus One In D Meter
Shell Lacked No Beauty
Zero IN (2006 Pushcart Prize nominee)
The Felt Sense of Birds
Deep Wounds (retired October 29, 2010)
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