Bizarre Intersection of Pregnancy, Sexualization, and Infantilization à la French Vogue
Ah, where to begin? The April issue of French Vogue features British model Lily Donaldson in a photo spread that nearly robs me of words. With a psuedo-pregnancy going on, Donaldson is shot smoking, tossing a baby doll, and engaging in other (not so) motherly behaviors, often appearing quite childlike in the doing.
That's right. Smoking is not good for baby. Is this shot supposed to be making a serious anti-smoking statement? I really don't get it. I love that Donaldson has a half-smoked cigarette in her right hand as well as her mouth...
Is it just me or is this the ultimate crossroads of sexualization and infantilization? She is clearly supposed to seem childlike AND sexy, which is just plain creepy. Plus there's the whole pregnancy factor to consider (and though it's really, REALLY hard to tell, I think she is supposed to be pregnant here).
What is this photo saying!? Looking sexy for the camera triumphs over catching baby? I don't know how to begin to analyze it. The following just may take the cake so far as eliciting dumbfoundedness.
Is this supposed to be some sort of reference to ejaculation a la Trojan (it may be hard to see here but there is a stream of 'milk' on her arm)? Astoundingly, that's the most logical answer I can come up with (no pun intended). The whole high-heeled domination of the rocking horse also makes me uncomfortable.
And once again, there's the pregnancy issue. It would be one thing if 'average-looking' women who were actually pregnant were used in a high fashion photo shoot (sans objectification, sexualization, infantilization, etcetera). However, an image of a 'pregnant' woman (who is thinner than most women who aren't pregnant) wearing dangerously high heels, playing with a baby doll, and looking hypersexualized is pretty unsettling.
What do you all think? What is this collection saying about motherhood? Pregnancy? Women? Beauty?
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