Last night Lady Gaga posted unretouched underwear photos of herself in a bid to fight critics who'd targeted her recent weight gain. “Bulimia and anorexia since I was 15,” she wrote alongside the makeup-free pictures. “But today I join the BODY REVOLUTION. To inspire Bravery. and BREED some m$therf*cking COMPASSION.” It's true that Gaga doesn’t look ‘full-figured’ or ‘meaty’, or any other word that people have recently used to describe her figure. In fact, she looks perfectly normal and - shock horror - human.
Since Gaga put the pics up on her Little Monsters blog a wave of photos have followed; from friends and fans who are recovering from mastectomies, who have lost limbs, who suffer from skin diseases... Like Gaga they are drawing attention to what might be seen as their flaws, and are asking people to accept them in all their imperfect glory. Gaga also started a new Twitter, A Body Revolution (as part of the Born This Way Foundation) where she’s been posting said photos and inviting fans to join her.
Unfortunately, the standard for women is set to perfection. We are scrutinised for our ‘crows feet’, our ‘orange peel’ and our ‘puffy faces’. And, as arguably the most famous woman on the planet (she will soon be the first person in the world to hit 30m Twitter followers), Gaga is subject to this in the most unrelenting way.
So in a society where not looking 'model perfect' is a sign of weakness, it's a brave move for Gaga to expose her near-naked body in such a defiant statement. It's not so much that she's pointing out how much she does or doesn't weigh, but she's publicly embracing her body, flaws and all. The fact that the singer has struggled with bulimia and anorexia for eleven years, makes it even more admirable. What's disheartening is that she had to go to such an extreme, on such a public scale, to silence her critics and remind us to embrace our bodies.
What's your reaction to Gaga's Body Revolution?