Beauty and the Best Critique

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Whitney Cho
Professor Constance Richard
LIB 111
20 October 2012
“Beauty and the Best”
Dave Barry, the author of Beauty and the Beast, examines the declining self esteem of men and women because of appearance while using statistical comparisons, amusing metaphors, and common anecdotes, validating that while men are growing “giant forehead-dwelling tropical caterpillars,” and women think “woof” when they look in the mirror, their self-esteem is dwindling due to the negative thoughts on their appearance.

Men and women have always had differing opinions about appearance and beauty. Barry shows the how men are more laid back about their appearance by comparing their daily preparation time, which only takes about “four-minutes daily.” Barry is pushing the fact that men are simple and simple means better in man world. On the other hand, women can take the longest time to get ready, yet they will still be unsure or unhappy with their appearance. On top of that, Barry states that “men don’t notice 97% of the beauty efforts” that women make. With this statistic, the author is trying to say that the self-esteem of women is lowered due to the fact that people don’t notice their efforts. He concludes that women think too much and care too much about their appearance. Barry is saying that women aren’t simple like men because of their state of mind regarding beauty and appearance. Barry explains that men are different than women in the self-esteem grouping. When a man’s self-esteem lowers, he will find someway to bring it up through competitive speech, knowledge, or just plain sarcasm. For example, Barry writes that if men were thrown into a room with Brad Pitt to learn about appearance, “they would find some way to bolster their self-esteem” and say, “Oh YEAH? Well what do you know about LAWN CARE, pretty boy?” This is a case of a typical male, showing that if they’re not good in one thing, they sure as hell will be better in something else. Essentially, Barry calls...
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