Elizabeth Nolan Brown // Blog

media. music. feminism. food. city-dwelling. story-telling. and other things.

Loving You Is Easy …

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Phoebe tackles The Beautiful People, and why we find them so:

There are, I think, three kinds of beautiful. First is the subjective, the people you find physically attractive – to be clear, this is not about ‘good personalities’ or ‘stable incomes’ or what have you, but about looks. These people tend to fall within normal limits, but for all kinds of subjective and subconscious reasons, their looks strike you as exceptional. Next are those you realize would generally be recognized as beautiful – the symmetric, the chiseled, the blond-and-tanned, the George Clooneys, the Harrison Fords – who do nothing for you personally. You will nevertheless react to differently to the objectively beautiful because of the confidence this beauty inspires in them (in reality or in your imagination), but your changed behavior will not be due to any physical desire. Then, finally, are the hot-to-you-and-others. These are the people whose subjective beauty to you matches up with a beauty you recognize would be agreed-upon by all.

I’d add a fourth category—those that are subjectively beautiful to you, but in a way that can’t be separated from personality traits—but I pretty much agree. The question is: do relationships work best when one or the other kind of attraction is at work?


Written by Elizabeth

October 24, 2009 at 5:45 pm

Posted in Asides, The Best Things

Tagged with ,

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