When Sir Mix-A-Lot rapped his ode to the curvaceous female body back in 1992, the world thought they were dealing with some sort of fetishist. ‘Baby Got Back’ was a stand-alone tribute to plus-size ladies at a time when the Kate Moss generation found the colossal bum a source of hilarity. Fast forward twenty years and Nicki Minaj’s reincarnation ‘Anaconda’ is a glaring example of the world’s current obsession with the giant posterior.
As a long-serving member of the booty brigade, I was initially glad to witness the newfound tide of appreciation for the more rounded derrière. The sea of discarded pencil skirts and split jeans seemed far less depressing, for one thing. The Donald Duck stance was no longer a source of shame but a mark of respect. This admiration, however, has morphed into a grotesque infatuation.
The ass has become the holy grail of aspiring stars everywhere. We are saturated with images of squat bums, yoga bums and baby-oiled bums that continue to break the internet. While we have happily bade farewell to the supermodel size zero fascination, we have replaced it with a similarly unattainable body image. Unfortunately, we aren’t satisfied with simply praising our lovely lady lumps; we have to criticise our petite peers for their lack of curves.
I cannot think of a more derogatory slur than ‘fat bitch’ but yet Skinny Cow is a humorous trademark for an ice-cream brand. In fact, skinny bitch is an accepted term in our modern vocabulary, often used in friendly conversation to express jealousy at a girl’s slim physique.
It Girl Taylor Swift recently hit back in her ‘Shake It Off’ video, satirising the barrage of sexually pumped pornographic scenes that are masquerading as music videos these days. Her barbed booty-shaking is a clear backlash to societal expectations but this retaliation has turned sour, invoking an ongoing hostility between the two sides. I myself am guilty for criticising her twerk action but mostly because it felt smug and superior; instead of lampooning larger figures, she could have taken the opportunity to champion her own shape.
We need to eliminate this culture of mockery. As women, we have to stop worrying what guys find attractive and start appreciating our own bodies for what they actually are, not what society deems they should be. Sans gluteal implants.