Rousey: I’m going to change the idea of what’s hot

Friday, August 09, 2013

The ideal body size and porportions are not hardwired, but rather are socially constructed.

The Venus of Willendor shows a hottie in 20,000 BC Mesopotamia.

Medieval painter Peter Paul Rubens captured the rubenesque standards of the time.

Red beans and rice didn’t miss Marilyn Monroe in the 50s.

It doesn’t take a scientist to see the trend that ends with Paris Hilton.

UFC women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey had a well-publicized struggle with weight issues as a teenager, and determined to do something about it, putting on weight, rather than dropping it, for a recent Maxim magazine cover shoot.



Rousey explained, during a recent Google hangout, in response to a fan who asked if Maxim objectifies women.

“No,” explained Ronda. “I think it speaks to a truth of society that we’re sexual people and sexual beings and ladies in general are sexual and pretending we’re not isn’t doing us any justice or anything like that. And I think that Maxim emphasizes the sexuality of women but it doesn’t objectify them.

“And that’s one of the reasons for this shoot. I specifically got heavy for it. I was 143 for the ESPN Body shoot and I was 151 for the Maxim shoot and I did it on purpose. Because when i was 14, my idea of – the standard that I held to look like was what I perceived the guys my age to want. And I saw all of them reading Maxim and I never looked like any of those girls.

“I wasn’t looking at Dove commercials for what I should look like or what other girls said looked pretty. ‘Oh no no you look fine’ Yeah, your friends are gonna say that. You look at what you think guys want and that’s what you want to be. So I kinda think if I’m going to have any cultural impact at all then I’m going to have to change the idea of what’s hot in general.

“Because I look at all these girls doing Playboy and Maxim … they cut weight for these shoots! They don’t look like that all the time. So you are purposefully given an impossible expectation to be industry standard of what’s attractive, and you’re never going to be able to meet or maintain that standard. And you’re going to keep buying and buying and buying more things to try and keep that.

“So I thought that for the Maxim shoot I was going to specifically go out of my way to not diet and go and do that shoot exactly how I walked around all the time. That was a little bit heavier and I think that has a positive impact and doesn’t objectify them, it changes the standard of what they’re expected to look like.

“I had a terrible time with body image and self esteem and eating disorders and all that other stuff. I’ve been open about it up until this point and that’s why I try do do as much as I can for the Didi Hirsch Mental Clinic and people like that because it’s such an unaddressed problem and I struggled through it for so many years and felt so alone in it for so long and then I figured out it wasn’t just me it was everybody and it’s done on purpose.

“Women are purposefully made to feel terrible about themselves so they buy more things so they feel like they look better. And it shouldn’t be like that, and it’s not worth the effect that it has. So it’s extremely important to me.”

Thanks to for the transcription!