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Ugliness and how shame is a form of social control

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BoutonLune

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Button Moon
Ugly and beautiful standards exist to me. I don't judge others worth by their looks, but am not unaware of them. When I know someone if I like them I will like or love the way they look and my perception will be different. Equally if I do not like them I will not care for the way they look, lol. But it is ingrained in society and even as a recluse I am part of society. I judge myself on my looks too, comparing myself badly against societies idea of beautiful. So by this logic I must acknowledge it's existence, even within me. Which is a bit depressing.

When looking at strangers etc it is not of high importance to me how they look. I will more look at how someone behaves/interacts if I pay attention at all. I try to treat everyone as if they are nice unless I find out otherwise.

People miss out on having some wonderful people in their life because they dismiss them on first glance.

I liked the idea behind the film Shallow Hal. If peoples behaviour showed on the outside, they may be inclined to be nicer. Without it unfortunately we will always have these people behaving in this way in the world.
 
S

strawberrywater

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Feb 24, 2021
Messages
150
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United States
Ugly and beautiful standards exist to me. I don't judge others worth by their looks, but am not unaware of them. When I know someone if I like them I will like or love the way they look and my perception will be different. Equally if I do not like them I will not care for the way they look, lol. But it is ingrained in society and even as a recluse I am part of society. I judge myself on my looks too, comparing myself badly against societies idea of beautiful. So by this logic I must acknowledge it's existence, even within me. Which is a bit depressing.

When looking at strangers etc it is not of high importance to me how they look. I will more look at how someone behaves/interacts if I pay attention at all. I try to treat everyone as if they are nice unless I find out otherwise.

People miss out on having some wonderful people in their life because they dismiss them on first glance.

I liked the idea behind the film Shallow Hal. If peoples behaviour showed on the outside, they may be inclined to be nicer. Without it unfortunately we will always have these people behaving in this way in the world.
Interesting perspective. It seems like beauty standards relate to the human desire to be accepted - eg. we lose weight or dye our hair to 'fit in' or not get teased. I've never felt desire to be part of something, in fact I will go out of my way to avoid it, so maybe I'm not the best person to speak on the subject, but that's how I see it. People want to look a certain way in order to be accepted.
 
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BoutonLune

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Mar 10, 2021
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2,067
Location
Button Moon
Interesting perspective. It seems like beauty standards relate to the human desire to be accepted - eg. we lose weight or dye our hair to 'fit in' or not get teased. I've never felt desire to be part of something, in fact I will go out of my way to avoid it, so maybe I'm not the best person to speak on the subject, but that's how I see it. People want to look a certain way in order to be accepted.
No, mine stems from severe bullying from my father when I was a child. In fact my whole family were extremely critical of looks. So it wasn't so much to be accepted, it was so that I didn't stand out to ridicule. Also I didn't want to embarrass them.

Edited to Add: They placed the social standards of beauty on a high pedestal. Hence it is ingrained in me. It may also be why I do not see the importance of it when I look at other people. I don't agree with it at all. I can't deny it exists in me though.
 
AlrightOkay

AlrightOkay

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Mar 15, 2021
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I see lots of social control. Problem is it goes on behind the scenes.
 
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quilteddown10

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Apr 26, 2021
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95
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UK
The road rules are mostly laws for public safety. Without them, people would crash more and be more at danger of injury and death. Society acceptance of what's beautiful or not can't be regulated (or, morally it should not be regulated by laws) so I would see them as totally different things. Someone's looks can't be a danger to society.
I think everyone's personal attraction to others plays a part too. Men I find attractive, other people might say they're ugly and vice versa. So there is no right or wrong. I hope that makes sense. If someone came up to you and said "You look handsome today" how would that make you feel? Would it cancel out most of the negativity you've heard?
But I totally get how you feel like something is wrong with you, but I'm sure there isn't. It sounds like you've dealt with some major a-holes.
Why are you sure there isn't something wrong with me? How can you tell?

While I agree that individuals may differ on what they find attractive/unattractive, it is simply a function of social statistics that there will be greater consensus among individuals' judgements of those that occupy the extreme (opposite) ends of the bell curve. The more you move to the middle, the less agreement there will be.

Many, many phenomena conform to the normal distribution (the 'bell' curve) and, I'm afraid, attractiveness is one of them. Unfortunately, I occupy one of the extremes (no prizes for guessing which) which is why, as a sheer statistical fact, there is a high degree of consensus among people regarding my appearance. Ugliness is a normal part of of the range of human appearance, but it occupies the extreme. It's rare. You don't see it very often which is why, when you do see it, it's a bit of a shock.
 
Q

quilteddown10

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 26, 2021
Messages
95
Location
UK
The road rules are mostly laws for public safety. Without them, people would crash more and be more at danger of injury and death. Society acceptance of what's beautiful or not can't be regulated (or, morally it should not be regulated by laws) so I would see them as totally different things. Someone's looks can't be a danger to society.
I think everyone's personal attraction to others plays a part too. Men I find attractive, other people might say they're ugly and vice versa. So there is no right or wrong. I hope that makes sense. If someone came up to you and said "You look handsome today" how would that make you feel? Would it cancel out most of the negativity you've heard?
But I totally get how you feel like something is wrong with you, but I'm sure there isn't. It sounds like you've dealt with some major a-holes.
As for whether ugliness poses a danger to society, well, that is a very interesting issue. If you were to speak to an evolutionary biologist or evolutionary psychologist they would probably argue that any mating community has to guard itself against the possibility of disease and deformity. The way individuals check for this is by assuming that the face is a signifier of genetic health and integrity. The face is a very informative surface. Think about how much information we extract about each other by way of their face. We make judgements that are so rapid that they can only be the result of a sub-rational, evolved process. There is a lot of science happening on this. As an ugly man, I am fascinated by it. So, in a way, ugliness IS a danger to society. It's a danger to healthy adults who are engaged in the psychological complexities of reproductive behaviour. If you are incapable of sorting the wheat from the chaff then you run the risk of producing offspring that might carry disease. Now, I would argue that this is a very basic type of psychological process that our prehistoric ancestors relied upon for good-quality mate selection. In our present society, however, it runs amock. It's almost like ugliness has become detached from what it signifies and gained a currency all of its own.
 
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