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Carre Otis, Super Models and the Future of the Image of Femininity

By Suzanne MacNevin

  • Carré Otis is now 33 years old at the time I am writing this.

  • She is now 30 pounds heavier than the average supermodel.

  • Her size is a British 16 or 18 (14 to 16 Canadian)

  • By modelling standards, she is fat.

  • By our standards (meaning the rest of society) she is gorgeous.

  • She worked for Guess?, Calvin Klein and numerous runways during the 1990s. Back then she was a size 10 (8 in Canada).

  • Back then she was starving.

  • She was also self loathing. She was hating what she was becoming.

  • She was depressed and was raped on a regular basis by people in the fashion business. She did not know how to say no.

  • When she had her seizure in 1999, operations discovered she had three holes in her partially collapsed heart. THREE. COLLAPSED.

  • Following the seizure, her hair literally went white and fell out in chunks.

    Her weight gain and the changes she has made are remarkable. But she still repulses me. I pity her like I pity a stupid beggar who doesn't know any better.

    Should we pity Carre Otis or be utterly disgusted by what she had done? Or perhaps we should be disgusted by the millions (and I do mean millions) of young women in North America alone who starve themselves to near death, and continue to do so..?

    Carre Otis has made a change in her life, and it is a positive change because she is now one of the few "Plus Size Super Models". Of course, being judged by your looks is still pretty sucky, but we won't go into that.

    I myself am both disgusted at Carre Otis and optomistic about the future. If a braindead supermodel can change her mind and society embraces her new idea, what does that say about society.

    It says society will follow braindead models, sure enough. It also says that society is ready for change. That its unafraid of change. That perhaps it is time for plus size models to become more popular in magazines and mass media.

    Such change would certainly be a blessing in contrast to the corrosive atmosphere that currently eats away at women's bodies and health.

    The Disgustingly Thin
    The Happily Gorgeous

    Certainly we can say that Carre Otis has learned from her experience and is not as brain dead as she once was (anorexia causes the body to eat away at brain tissue in order to maintain the body's health), but how many millions of young women will only find out too late that they have suffered and nearly killed themselves just so that they can go braindead and get raped too? How many will learn from Carre Otis's mistake?

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