The Sweet Ripening of the Woman

April 14, 2005 at 11:25 pm Leave a comment

As this spring brings buds and blossoms galore, it’s clear that those trees, plants, and flowers want to burst onto the stage with all their beautiful glory. It is also quite evident that a new and exciting social change is springing forth for women as well.

Issues of gender equality come in so many forms; professional, relational, spiritual, intellectual, and yes, even sexual. Traditional Western thought demands that women scorn their sexuality, one of the most vital and enjoyable parts of life.

If you asked a woman in 1905, just one hundred years ago, if she was as sexually satisfied as her partner, there would have no doubt been a variety of possible responses. If she was taught that such talk was not “ladylike,” she may have shied from an answer or stormed off in a pious huff. However, if you could coax an honest reply, it would have probably entailed the required deference to the needs of her husband.

However, there is a new season springing to life in America. With women now in powerful positions in the media, new programs and commercials have a distinctively feminine flare – the kind that can only be attributed to a strong woman who knows what she wants and knows how to get it.

One example of this phenomenon is a recent McDonald’s commercial with a woman who says that when she is eating her McGriddle and drinking some McDonald’s coffee, she feels anything is possible and dreams of hiring a pool boy – though she has no pool. How wonderfully scandalous! This commercial brilliantly hits home with every woman because yes, we think about those types of things too.

I consider this commercial pioneering material. To have a man say such things is traditionally acceptable, after all men do enjoy sex. But to have a woman say such things breaks all social decorum, yet opens the doors of flagrant sexuality on one of the last places to accept the woman in her real beauty – commercial marketing.

Commercial marketing has always portrayed the woman as either a sex object for men or a Betty Crocker type, prompting several generations of women to constantly reach for unachievable perfection projected by one delusional image or the other. This medium has been slow to recognize the woman for her true self. I applaud McDonald’s for this bold move. In my opinion, this single commercial has shattered the 50s prototype and the sex object image into tiny fragments. My hope is this commercial will set the precedence for future marketing.

One more very popular example of the changes taking place in the media concerning women is the new hit show Desperate Housewives. This show is about reality. When I watch this show I think to myself, “This is how real women are.” Sure, it goes to extremes at times, as any television drama does. But it also portrays women who are strong and intelligent.

One of the latest episodes for Desperate Housewives has a scene where Terri Hatcher’s character wants to give certain man another chance but decides she can’t bring herself to trust him enough to work things out. I didn’t expect that ending at all. I was shocked that she didn’t go running back to those strong male arms, as is oft the ending in most romantic dramas in America. But no, she was strong, she was brave and she was intelligent. She was not needy, insecure or “desperate.” It made me proud to be a woman.

Like this television character, women no longer wait to be told how they should feel or what they should want. They are finally free to find out for themselves. For these women, fulfillment comes in a variety of ways – be it through sexual, intellectual, religious, political, or social pursuits. Today’s woman has many dimensions and I applaud the media for finally catching up to those of us who have embraced our many sides to find completion through exploring all that life has to offer.

It is high time the media targeted the women who are comfortable in our own skins. Maybe this change is because they finally realize we are too intelligent to buy into the absurd notion that we need to be recreated into some 18-year-old anorexic to be beautiful. More likely, women are the ones calling the shots behind that camera. Either way, a new season has definitely started and it promises the sweet ripening of the woman.

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Entry filed under: Stella Ramsaroop.

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