August 8, 2007

Your Turn: Good Time For A Squeeze


I’m up to my ears in boxes.  Unable to boost a signal in the neighborhood, I’ve been driving around for two days looking for free Wi-Fi.  And it’s August, which means that while you and I carry on deconstructing images, others (legislators, for example) are off escaping the heat.  (Both kinds.)

Because I’ve got to stop blogging YKos ’07 sometime before the ’08 version rolls around; I could stand to make some room around here (and get back to picture gathering); we haven’t looked at an Economist since who-knows-when (oh yeah, that was when); and because we’ve built up some visual expertise on the subjects of gender stereotyping and sexual politics, I’m interested in your take on this cover.

According to the lead article, Americans have lately become “too plump” with cash.  As a result, the recent stock market sell off, with the threat of “tighter” money, has given the market just what it needed, which was a “tight squeeze.”

So, what makes the instinct of insatiability necessarily male and the restrictive instinct necessarily female?  And why is the corset on the outside?  And, how large had this guy grown, anyway? (Because I really can’t tell.)  And isn’t TE taking the metrosexual thing just a bit too far?  And, with the Fall fashion season just around the corner, why is the magazine propagating/modeling these unjustifiable shapes?

…Although I’d agree that, where money and greed are concerned, the overlap between sexy and painful is a very close fit.

(illustration: unattributed.  The Economist.  Cover.  Aug 2, 2007)

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Michael Shaw
See other posts by Michael here.

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