Wednesday 21 February 2018

Laura Davis: 'Mary Beard is not "too ugly for TV' - why do we expect women to look perfect on television?

Mary Beard
Mary Beard

Laura Davis

When Samantha Brick first entered public consciousness a month ago describing how her good looks had left her unpopular with women, she’d unwittingly tugged on a thread which unravelled into a tangled national debate surrounding jealousy, appearance and vanity.

This week, she threw herself to the lions and backed up A A Gill’s criticisms of Mary Beard’s appearance during her latest series of Meet the Romans, when he wrote “If you are going to invite yourself into the front rooms of the living, then you need to make an effort.”

The classics professor had written an article in retaliation, describing how the reason for his ridicule of her appearance was because some men are intimidated by intelligent women. She also pointed out – as indeed many others have – who cares whether she wears lip gloss or not?

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