Beauty gleams in unexpected places, but its effulgence turns to tawdry glitter when it is shaped and squeezed into form-fitting frames. Rigid ideas of what is beautiful or desirable can reinforce oppressive structures. However, when these concepts are more flexible they can be subversive as well.
A woman can be more than something that just exists in a marital home, a woman can be more than just a beautiful body used as a mere decoration in the household. Isn't it high time we talked about the problems of the terminology used to define beauty and the association of it with sexuality if Chughtai tried doing this in 1941?
“It’s fascinating Yasmina, but also scary how sex or sexualising something can be ignited from our need for beauty that probably stirs positive emotions that we consider beautiful, such as feeling pleasure. But you know as well, desiring what we think is beautiful can generate fluidity: I can never know what I am exactly. All I know is that I was with men, and I was with women, and all of them tickled something within me. "
Beauty – a word that often haunts me, and ironically also a key idea in the process of my own empowerment with regard to owning up to my preferred gender, sexuality and my body-type. The popular imagination, trends and culture around ‘beauty’ baffle me. They often make me feel belittled and put me in a…