Motherhood, mental illness and beyond

Best looks

Yesterday a young woman died. Aged just 25, her death was sudden and apparently unexpected; she leaves behind a grieving family, husband and two little boys who aren’t old enough to understand why Mummy isn’t there any more. Her name was Peaches Geldof and she was known as a celebrity, both because of her famous parents and in her own right. Naturally most of the media pounced on the news of her death, interviewing anyone they could find with a vague connection to her and fuelling speculation about how and why she died. The usual ghoulish reaction to a celebrity death was certainly in evidence, with endless stories rehashing her life and career.

At the offices of Cosmopolitan magazine, however, the staff seemed to forget that Ms Geldof had a life and career. In fact they seemed to forget altogether that she was a real, flesh and blood woman with friends and family who are shocked and grieving, and decided that their “tribute” to her would be this:

image

Yes, you read that right. A woman has died tragically young, two small boys are motherless and the only thing that Cosmopolitan magazine can think of to say is “We liked her clothes”. What the hell?! In fact they don’t even acknowledge that she was a person at all, merely referring to her as a “fashion world fixture”. Now, a door handle is a fixture. A plug socket is a fixture. A woman is a human being, not a bloody fixture!

Peaches Geldof was a daughter and sister. She was married; she carried and gave birth to two babies who are still too young to understand where their mummy has gone. She had hopes, dreams, a career and aspirations. She loved and was loved in return. She laughed, she cried, she had happy days and sad days. She was like every other woman and she was worth far more than merely the fabric with which she covered her body! For Cosmopolitan to reduce her to a mere mannequin, a doll whose sole purpose is to be looked at and admired, is insulting not just to Ms Geldof but to the magazine’s readership and indeed, all women.

We live in a society where a woman’s perceived value is mostly based on her appearance. Her height, weight, hair colour, the size of her breasts and length of her legs, as well as many other physical features. You know this, I know this, Cosmopolitan magazine know this. It’s what makes them money, after all. But this shallow, pathetic, dehumanising piece about a woman who’s barely been dead for a day is a new low, and whoever is responsible for it should be deeply ashamed of themselves.

Comments on: "Best looks" (11)

  1. spot on Sam!I really hate these trashy mags yet ironically ,Cosmo try and claim to be feminist and empowering.(kraken Wakes wrote a piece on this yesterday).
    I liked Peaches but i did often see a troubled part of her.Co.dolences to her family.

  2. I was shocked at the speed the media pounced on her death. It’s horrific, not least because of the speed at which the articles appeared but also the content of them. I hadn’t come across the Cosmo article (for fairly obvious reasons if you know me!) but it really is insulting to the readership, as you say, to concentrate on the poor girls wardrobe!

  3. 100% agree with you. I hate women’s fashion magazines anyway but this just backs up why I hate them!

    Both my husband and I felt gutted last night, mainly for those two little babies. It really is awful.

  4. sarahmo3w said:

    Fabulous post and all so very true. Can’t bear to think what her family must be going through right now.

  5. So agree with you, Sam! It’s pretty shocking the speed at which the media reduces someone’s life to what they think will “sell”…

  6. This is a great piece as usual, although I don’t think this is quite fair:
    “Naturally the media pounced on the news of her death, interviewing anyone they could find with a vague connection to her and fuelling speculation about how and why she died.”
    Some media outlets have certainly done this but I don’t think it’s quite fair to lump us all together in the same bracket. Our coverage certainly hasn’t been like that; our editor is lovely and I imagine it’s been an upsetting story for him to cover. We haven’t intruded on the family’s grief, speculated about the cause of Peaches’ death or glorified in it; we’ve merely reported what happened, which is that a young woman tragically died leaving behind a grieving father, husbands, sons and sisters.

  7. I agree with every word of the piece otherwise though!

  8. Brilliant post. The magazines response was a shocking dehumanisation. X

  9. Gosh I didn’t see this article! I’m not a fan at all of trashy magazine either printed or online. My heart broke yesterday for her family. Her poor babies, I can’t believe this was allowed!

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