Search Results for "brooke shields"

27th 2009
Brooke Shields, you’re the biggest slut ever, and we’ll never let you forget it.

Posted under childhood & Gender & the body

brookeshieldsBrooke Shields gave an interview recently in which she suggested that her “greatest health regret” is that she had a poor body image as an adolescent and young adult, and that this inhibited her sexually:

Q: What’s your biggest health regret?
Not learning to love the way I looked earlier. And I think I would have had sex a lot earlier! [Laughs.] I think I would have lost my virginity earlier than I did at 22. I had the public and all this pressure, and I wish I had just gotten it over with in the beginning when it was sort of OK. I think I would have been much more in touch with myself. I think I wouldn’t have had issues with weight—I carried this protective 20 pounds [in college]. It was all connected. And to me, that’s a health regret.

Yet the media coverage of this interview doesn’t pause to consider that her early acting and modeling career may have in fact been the cause of her poor body image and her fear of sexuality. 

Brooke Shields may have taken on sexually mature roles at a young age, but the actress reveals that she was much more reserved off-screen.

Shields, who portrayed a child prostitute in “Pretty Baby” at age 12, tells Health magazine that she wishes she had been the pinup girl that she portrayed* but that her bad body image kept her from losing her virginity until age 22. Continue Reading »


2nd 2009
Another lesson for girls: love your body

Posted under American history & childhood & Gender & the body & women's history


Historiann and Knitting Clio, ca. 1982

The doyenne of adolescent and college student health history, Knitting Clio, has written an utterly appropriate lesson for girls, number 11:  “Love your body.”  She adds some thoughts too about Brooke Shields, and even scares up one of those scandalous old magazine advertisements for Calvin Klein Jeans.  (Just click here to see it–go on, click–I know you’re curious.  Doesn’t Shields look incredibly young to be wearing all of that makeup?  It was the 1980s, friends–that’s how we rolled when we were in our early teens.)  KC writes,  “I both hated and emulated [Shields] for those Calvin Klein ads — they were one of the (many) reasons I disliked my body.  I dieted strenuously and got real skinny so I could fit into my pair of CKs.  Other girls in my high school went further and were hospitalized for anorexia nervosa and other eating disorders.”  She continues: 

In graduate school, I worked with Joan Jacobs Brumberg, and found that what she calls  “bad body fever”  has been a problem that has plagued women for at least a century.  Now that I’m approaching middle age, I’m more tolerant about what my body looks like, even though women of a certain age — like Brooke — who still look fabulous have raised the bar considerably.

Right on, sister.  (She reminds us of the “Love your body” campaign, an adjunct of the National Organization for Women.)  How much of my teens and twenties did I waste obsessing about this body part or that feature?  (How much time when you were young and gorgeous did you waste?  How much time are you wasting right now?)  Continue Reading »