December 28, 2009
Wehbe 2.0: A Whiter Shade of Palestinian?
(Apologies to Procul Harum (Haram?) for whom, unlike the Palestinians, 1967 was good year.) With a lot less denial than the late Michael Jackson, Palestinian women are reported to be aggressively consuming skin-whitening products. This, according to The Christian Science Monitor, which also cites and links to the recent lament about anti-dark skin sentiment among Arabs written by Nesrine Malik in the Guardian (UK) not long ago and also blogged about here at Aqoul. The pigment adjusting phenomenon appears partly inspired by such figures as the scintillating Lebanese chanteuse/statesperson Haifa Wehbe (ok, I made up parts of that description, just to irritate) and the Xena: Warrior Princess dark-hair/alabaster-skin aesthetic she can manifest, and which she shares with better example Nancy Ajram, the pendular-beaked former AUB Biophysical Engineering Department-Chair turned-singer (ok, made up some stuff there too). Anyway, jeez louise, the issues we humans can hinge our self-estimation on and make a mystique out of! But I do admit to getting seriously worked up if any blind fool even suggests that TIna Louise's Ginger was hotter than Dawn Wells' Mary Ann.
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I think the black-hair-white-skin aesthetic predates Xena quite a bit.
"How happy we were, those days that have passed, days of pleasure, when we lived with those who had black, flowing hair and white shoulders..." Ibn Zaydun, in Hourani.
Posted by: Antiquated Tory at December 30, 2009 02:48 PM
"I think the black-hair-white-skin aesthetic predates Xena quite a bit."
I can trace it all the way back to Wonder Woman, Betty Boop, and Lois Lane but the archeological record then goes dark.
Xena is simply an example; but on Palestine geogrpahically I will see your Ibn Zaydun and raise you a Song of Solomon, chapter 7, allowing for purple to be dark. (And man, nothing gets me excited for romance like those fishpools in Heshbon, baby!)
"Thy neck is as a tower of ivory; thine eyes like the fishpools in Heshbon . . . the hair of thine head like purple . . . How fair and how pleasant art thou, O love, for delights!"
Posted by: matthew hogan at December 30, 2009 03:40 PM
PS -- Are we sure Ibn Zaydun was talking about women, there were rumors, you know?
Posted by: matthew hogan at December 30, 2009 03:46 PM