Monday, June 27, 2005

thE faireR seX

#include universal_disclaimers.h
I was watching National Geographic Channel which was showing some documentary about animal life that this thought came to my mind, once again, after such a long time. It used to be one of our favorite discussion topics during engineering days and the absence of the discussing gang somehow had killed those discussions. Sorry, I haven’t mentioned till now, what this so called topic is. Carrying forward the fairer assumption you got from the heading of this post, and living up to its expectations, it is nothing but, who is the fairer sex? Male or female? Men or women?

Let the story start from the birds and animals because they were the first inhabitants of planet earth before humans. Let it end with humans because that is where the basis of this thought lies.

If we look around us and observe the nature for a while, there is something which doesn’t go without attention. Its beauty! Beautiful flowers, beautiful birds and beautiful animals! But hey, there is a small problem! All these birds or animals are not beautiful. In fact only half of them are beautiful. Always one class of birds or animals is more beautiful than the other. In birds and animals, this class is the Male! To be frank, I am not becoming chauvinistic. Instead I am trying to look at this case with a neutral stand point.

Well, for a bird or an animal beauty is given by nature to attract their female mate.

The cosmetics industry of India had a size of Rs. 126 billion (Rs. 12,600 crores) in 2001 with 8.7% growth rate. By this rate it would have grown to Rs. 175 billion in 2005. And who are the users of cosmetics, females! I know this is not entirely true, hence let me have an estimate of 90% of this usage being done by women. This story is similar world-wide.

Here I find a problem. When it comes to humans, who are the beautiful class? Men or women?

By the law of the nature, extending from the case of birds and animals, it has to be men. Does nature got it wrong in the case of humans? Or does it deliberately put it the other way round when it came to humans?

But nature played a mysterious role here. It didn’t give man or woman, the brilliant colors of a male bird, the long tusk of a he-elephant etc as the differentiating factors denoting beauty. Or in the case of humans, the definition itself of beauty went wrong?

During the previous sessions, we had our own view points and opinions. I am inviting you to take part in this discussion. What do you feel about this? Who exactly is the fairer sex? Men or women?

PS: These are my own views and are not intended to hurt anyone's feelings. I want to give a thought as to why this happened in the case of humans. On a much more personal note, I believe that women are indeed the fairer sex, the beautiful class. But that should not stop me from finding out the reason, right?


Anamika said...

When u say beauty, what is the definition of beauty? Is it just the looks? No, definitely. There is an inner beauty for the soul. That varies from person to person, not related to gender at all.

silverine said...

What do you mean by the term 'fairer'? It is a term coined by the English to describe the beautiful and delicate Victorian ladies. Therefore it is an outdated term.

Jithu said...

> anamika
thts an excellent point! the definition of beauty may be different for humans. the thinking ability of mankind might have given it a new dimension. may be in front of this the external beauty is completely irrelevant and hence the definition of beauty itself had changed..

> silverline
agreed to wt u said. "It is a term coined by the English to describe the beautiful..." the word beautiful is the key in this sentence. the question is not abt the terminology, but does it means women are beautiful than men in the case of humans? or they called women beautiful bcoz women are the beautiful class in humans?

silverine said... look for beauty in women when searching for a mate. The hour glass figure is a sign of fertility, which intrinsically attracts men. While women go for physique and nowdays intellect which is what is needed to survive in the concrete jungle. The penchant for men with good physique is also natural as it would provide for better quality offspring. Whether we like it or not..we do think and act like animals at a baser level. So the 'term' fair would apply to these qualities in both gender.

Jithu said...

> silverline
yup! thts true! and definitely a way to look at the situation..

beauty, in humans, unlike animals, may be distributed among male and female, but in different dimensions..

to a lesser extent it can also be a perception conceived by humans towards the opposite sex..

Praveen said...

I dont think we can associate something called 'fairer' when it comes to gender. If you mean 'fairer' with respect to beauty, then I go by the saying that "Beauty Lies in the Eyes of the Beholder".

By the way, its a nice topic for discussion ;)

Jithu said...

> praveen
though i used the term fairer, which arised to denote the beauty of women, it was with respect to beauty only.

btw, liked the usage "beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder" on this topic. it was interesting :-)

anil said...

its a good topic to discuss. but is it possible to arrive at a conclusion on this?
so as praveen said, beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder seems to be a much more acceptable solution. :-)

flutteringeyes said...

I really enjoyed reading this entry!

Jithu said...

> anil
this discussion is never meant to arrive at a conclusion.

> flutteringeyes
thank u very much :-)

Geo said...

I presume u r talking abt physical beauty, and not some internal beauty and stuff like that...Those who believe beauty is internal and blah blah blah, please don’t proceed any further...

So… the big question is "whats beauty?"

U ever noticed whether ur school time buddy (ofcource of the opposite gender) was beautiful?
U ever noticed whether ur college time blind date was beautiful (a blind date is meant to be chosen blindfolded, right? )?
U ever noticed whether the lady whom u "Slam bam thank u ma'am"–ed was beautiful (weren't you trying to make the best use of the half chance u got)?
U ever noticed whether your lover/wife was/is beautiful (u chose a lover for her looks or character/brains?)?

So where does beauty come into picture?
I guess its only when u ogle at a folk of chicks that this concept of beauty gains some meaning…
(shall continue if I get some more inspiration... ;_))

Jithu said...

> arun
I like the openness of ur comments.

Yes, wts beauty in the case of humans seems to be the question which answers something...

But, apart from the things u mentioned, dont u think beauty got a higher level meaning, atleast in the case of humans?

കലേഷ്‌ കുമാര്‍ said...

പ്രിയ ജിത്തു,
ഞാന്‍ കാത്തിരിക്കുകയാണ്‌ ജിത്തുവിന്റെ മലയാളം ബ്ലോഗുകള്‍ കാണാന്‍!
please take your own time.

Jithu said...

> kalesh
sure yaar,
i already booked the space.. will release it as soon as possible.. thank you very much for your patience and support :-))

kickassso said...

I really think women are the unfair sex!!! Whether in denying countless menfolk their affections or while giving credit for men's dealing with their vastly more complex (!) minds, seem to me (a rather puzzled male ) rather unfair

Jithu said...

> kickasso
well, by fairer sex i meant beautiful sex.
really appreciate ur candidness. bt to a small extent males also do the same sometimes rt ;-)))

Mirage said...

I don't entirely agree... the term 'fairer sex' is used to define women but not just on the basis of looks but also on demeanour. Women are generally seen as gentle, loving, emotional and fragile, while men on the other hand are considered macho, rough...the works.

In the animal kingdom, however, its diff. Females are more fierce. Like for instance, the lioness hunts for her family, or the female spider eats her mate for lunch...etc etc!!

Jithu said...

> mirage
:-) well true, thts also a way to look at it.

the discussion seems to be going really strong, with so many ppl contributing to it. cool!

Kiran G said...

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder"...true...

why do most people find the people in their own race more beautiful? (as always there may be certain exceptions to this) A beautiful face is the sum total (or shall i say average?) of all the faces you have seen in your life. So a more symmetrical face is more beautiful just because it has the least deviation :) ...that's just about physical appearance and that's not the only thing that influences our decisions...

the answer to arun george's question: well there are some things more important that beauty. in the case of "Slam bam thank u ma'am" it must have been a more primitive need. your wife/gf is some one with whom you have to live your life together so their other qualities might gain prominence rather than their beauty? one question: what attracted you to your lover/wife in the first place? might be their physical appearance or may be their other attributes? maybe you start finding the person whom you love more beautiful after you have fallen in love... (hope this is inspiration enough for you to continue...)

so for human beings, almost every emotion or behavioural traits is a fall out of their brain activity. Although at some point of human evolution these were influenced more by nature and thus more similar to other living beings around us; now the vestiges of nature are receeding and will always be as we progress.

Jithu said...

> kiran
thts cool!

Kiran said...

In my 12th std biology class,we were taught that all living beings live inorder to maintain the species...

for the survival of the species.

We all live for the survival of our create good quality offsprings of our kind who can survive so that they can reproduce healthy young ones so that they can....

In every species,the female wants the best male around and vise versa[so as to have healthy kids] This is the RULE OF NATURE.
In the eyes of a human being,he sees 2 peacocks..1 male,other female. He compares and says that one is "fairer" than the other.But,as far as the female peacock is concerned,she knows how fair her mate is.
The beauty lies in the eys of the beholder.
For a male peacock,his mate will be "fairer" than himself.
Who are we poor men,after all to interfere into their world?
A wife will enjoy her man's masculin powers...those strong muscles...that broad chest..that hairy arms...and a man will enjoy his wife's feminine charm.
Thats the way is is..none is fairer..its just a question of survival of the fittest[among men and among women]

Jithu said...

> happy girl reshmi
to be frank, i'm just amazed by this reply. i understand the depth of this point u made.. another valuable insight.. :-)

just to push u a lil bit further. do u think the law or survival of the fittest holds for humans? in the marriage market everyone has someone.. sometimes its seen that if u have money, then all this funda of survival of fittest vanishes. wt do u say abt this?

scorpigle said...

An intriguing post and equally well followed up comments.. enjoyed every minute of it.

Kiran said...

sure, the law of survival of the fittest holds good for human too.

Take the case of a man who married a woman for her money...if his love life suffers,then,he is sure to find a better partner to fulfill his needs. It is the human nature....after all,we are only begining to lead a civilized life.Our animal instincts will not allow us to brun away that passion.

Human kind is selfish like most other animals,he needs it all...the money,power,beauty,everything...he must get the best of everything.
If necessity forces him to go after money,he will search for the rest in another person.
This is true for men and woman .
Some people have a more controlled mind,so,they dont chase these "crazy" desires.
Inorder to avoid nasty situations,we have made rules[in the form of religion etc] and have committed ourselves to obey it.

When the animal instinct[our true nature] gets the better of us, we just break the bonds and go for it.

Kiran said...

a slight modification>>>>
i had typed:"Our animal instincts will not allow us to brun away that passion."

i would like to change it as>>>> "bury" the passion instead of "burn"


Jithu said...

> scorpigle
nice to know that u enjoyed it :-)

> happy girl reshmi
:-) there comes the justification part. so this can be the reason for the failure of some families..

Geo said...

u r right rashmi.
its a matter of a fight between ur animal (read basic) instincts and the societal forces.
Given a chance, how many of us will stick to the moral rules imposed by society?
As they say, virginity is not always dignity but simply the lack of opportunity.

Jithu said...

> geo
hmmm... quite candid a comment!

Kiran said...

Yea,Well said,Geo.

Lack of opportunity...yes,i guess so.
Too bad though...i mean,its too ba that we do have that instinct some where deep within.

I have often wondered why people ever marry. If it is for the necessity of a partner,isnt a good friend enough? But then...oh well,i guess i dont have the answer.

Jithu said...

> kiran
i saw ur comment today only.. well i think the only reason which can be attributed to marriage is the sustenance of our species.. rest all can be done away with out a marriage!! but then, in a world which experiences population explosion this marriage for sustenance of the species itself can be questioned..

Kiran said...

and the discussion continues...

Jithu said...

saw this today.. :-) btw where are u?

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