Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Karee's Informal Research for Sonnet 106

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Shakespeare's Sonnet 106 addresses his perspective of beauty. To him beauty is physical and will eventually fade with time. I decided to look in a little deeper to compare what the world and a few others think of beauty.
  1. "Back View of Beauty: a bias in attractiveness judgement," which was published in Perception in 2013, invites the reader to pay attention to the conscious and unconscious impressions that we have of others, but brings up the point that we make judgements based on the back view of a person. They found "the average attractiveness of the back-view photographs was rated higher than the front-view photographs, though the bias depends on the combination of viewer and viewed person's gender. We found a stronger (and significant) bias in judgement of female attractiveness by male viewers; men tended to perceive or expect higher attractiveness of an unknown woman when he first sees her from behind." So does that mean men judge more on looks? Maybe Shakespeare wasn't so far off. 
  2. Dove has started using Twitter to help uplift others with #SpeakBeautiful, #MyBeautyMySay, and #dovepositivechange. While their campaigns are far reaching the question is if they are able to portray inner beauty. 
  3. People, companies, and MEDIA all try to tell us the definition of beautiful. Cameron Russell, a model, gave a TED Talk during which she defines what the world calls "beautiful." And yet she addresses the problem of insecurity. Beauty doesn't mean a good quality of life.
  4. I spoke with a friend who happens to be the director of the Women's Services. She has spoken to large groups of people on the issue of beauty and self-esteem, not to mention the "Be You" campaigns that she ran. She is striving to help others know that their physical beauty is not everything. 
I think this photo that gaps the generations, captures beauty better than Shakespeare describes in Sonnet 106. Love that knows no bounds. Beauty that is not defined by time.


  1. Good research! I especially liked that you talked with someone at women's services. What a good person to talk with about beauty. I wonder what she thought specifically of Shakespeare's poem, but good insight.