Boldly bucking current runway trends that celebrate the non-skeletal female form, clothing retailer Topshop went with Australian model Codie Young as the (miserable-looking) face of their Prim and Polished line. The reaction from eating disorder groups was swift, who denounced the company's use of a size-zero model as deeply irresponsible. Topshop took the photo down, and replaced it with another of Young in which she looked marginally less prone to shattering into a thousand pieces at the slightest touch. Young herself, meanwhile, countered accusations that she is anorexic on her personal blog:
Joyce Maynard, the writer who had a creepy affair with gross old J.D. Salinger when he was 53 and she a mere 18, is still tattling on the egregiously overrated recluse. And it sounds like he has it coming. "[S]he's taking him on again in 'Going Hungry: Writers on Desire, Self-Denial and Overcoming Anorexia,' a series of essays compiled by Kate Taylor. Maynard, without identifying Salinger by name, discusses the relationship she had after her freshman year at Yale with 'a man who liked that I was skinny and, in fact, taught me new tricks to stay that way. Over the year that followed, the relationship grew increasingly difficult for many reasons, but I suspect his policing of my body and my eating was one of them . . . The experience of having another person - even one I loved - telling me what to eat and forbidding certain foods filled me with frustration . . . '"
A new book called Chalked Up by ex-gymnast Jennifer Sey appears to confirm what many of us have long suspected: gymnastics is a weird and creepy sport. Not the tumbling and flipping part; that's cool enough. But the entire gymnastics complex that takes little girls and hammers them into world class athletes with eating disorders is a little sickening. And all those middle-aged men coaching—what are they doing there? I choose to sweepingly judge the lot of them as shady characters. Sey's experiences, related in a new interview with Salon, certainly reinforce that impression:
Woman down! Columbia's hunger strike is one less strong, after Barnard student Aretha Choi collapsed in the library Saturday on the fourth day of the student protest against something or other. It seems Choi isn't new to this particular form of protest—the one-time Phillips Andover student spoke to Asian-American women's magazine Audrey for an April story this year about her longtime struggle with anorexia. This poor girl needs to make some new friends, stat, because the ones she's got didn't seem too concerned about her participation in the five-student strike. (IvyGate, which posted an item about Choi yesterday, seems to have pulled it today.)
"A provocative advertising poster by Oliviero Toscani, the Italian photographer, depicting an emaciated anorexic woman posing naked has caused shock in Italy and around the world. The campaign, which coincides with the start of Milan Fashion Week, is intended to alert not only the fashion industry but also young women to the dangers of anorexia. The woman on the poster is Isabelle Caro, a French model who, at 27, weighs only 31kg (4st 12lb)." The dangers of anorexia apparently include being shot by a famous Italian photographer for an ad campaign that will be seen worldwide. [Times (U.K.)]
As we continue to enjoy the unghostwritten literary debut of one of America's most beloved television actresses, we learn a lot about pain and human nature and our heroine, Kate Keyes-Morgan. One of the things we learn is that her controlling husband has basically forced her to have an eating disorder. Fun times!
We're saddened by the recent spate of anorexia-related model deaths, so we're glad that the fashion industry is taking these tragedies seriously and initiating meaningful changes. We were especially heartened by the news, reported by Page Six today, that Anna Wintour is spearheading a symposium on proposed regulations for model size. This kind of symposium is the right step, according to one "model agency chief," because
We want to take a brief moment out of our hectic day to celebrate a very important milestone in the life of one of our favorite people: Today marks the 46th birthday of cadaverous acrimony-dispenser Ann Coulter. Coulter, 46, has been a bit quiet of late, perhaps busy reflecting on her own mortality and how, when her end finally comes, all she will have contributed to this world is a legacy of poorly-argued calumny and the suggestion that 9/11 widows blew up the towers themselves for the insurance money (or maybe she's just busy allegedly plagiarizing other people's material for her next book, Assfuckers: How Clinton and Gore Had a Secret Gay Relationship With Osama and Saddam), but in any event, we miss you, Ann: We need your subtle incisiveness back in the the national conversation. Anyway, we were all set to bake you a cake, complete with 47 (one for good luck!) candles in the shape of the New York Times building (fun to watch burn!) but then we remembered that whole snorting-meth-instead-of-eating-food thing, so consider this post our birthday gesture instead. Here's hoping your sail into the shores of 47 is peaceful and untroubled by any further accusations of inaccuracy or literary piracy!