Lookism: A Problem of Modern Society

Topics: Aesthetics, Discrimination, The Washington Post Pages: 1 (299 words) Published: March 10, 2011
‘Lookism’, as a problem of modern society.

Term ‘Lookism’ is used to refer to discrimination against or prejudice towards others based on their appearance. People we find attractive are given preferential treatment and people we find unattractive are denied opportunities. The term was first coined within the Fat acceptance movement. It was used in the The Washington Post Magazine in 1978, which asserted that the term was coined by ‘fat people’ who created the word to refer to ‘discrimination based on looks’. History of term is very interesting. At first, this kind of discrimination, we are talking about is a reaction to the body and the face, was named as ‘aestheticism,’ or even ‘physicalism.’ Scientists have discovered other kinds of reactions that can be identified as a separate category. Besides, terms such as ‘physicalism’ and ‘aestheticism’ are too well established in other contexts to be of much use here. The choice turned out to be between ‘looksism’ and ‘lookism.’ ‘Looksism,’ with the ‘s’ in the middle, connotes a somewhat objective situation in which one has one’s looks as one has one’s social markers of race, class, and gender. ‘Lookism,’ on the other hand, carries a suggestion of a person’s ‘look’ or style, and thus tends to skew discussion toward the opposite pole, matters of culture and taste. Term ‘lookism’ had an advantage for define of kind of discrimination. Problem of ‘lookism’ is relevant today in developed countries, such as USA, Canada, and Europe. This problem causes a many disputes. We can not say for sure that ‘lookism’ is unjust. This is an important issue for economists because they seem to assume that ‘lookism’ might be justified if it is connected to increased productivity. Among Americans, many trials with employers regarding discrimination based on appearance.
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