This piece on the evolution of the ideal female body across the past century raises all sorts of questions:
- Did the ideal female body evolve so quickly in past centuries as well, shifting from one decade to the next?
- Why does the ideal female body change so quickly? Is it culturally influenced? The evolutionary argument has always been that a female's body is a key signal of physical fitness and suitability for child-bearing, but that shouldn't change so much over one century, and certainly not in the seemingly haphazard manner documented in this piece, jumping from thin to curvy to heroin chic to bootylicious. Perhaps the evolutionary argument is somewhat weakened?
- Who drives the definition of the ideal female body more, men or women? The article does not come down conclusively one way or the other, but many of its profiles seem to lean towards women, especially celebrity women, defining each decade's standard.
- Has the ideal male body also changed as much across the past century? If not, why? The only equivalent male standard that comes to mind is the Brad Pitt Fight Club look, a lean, muscular look with super-defined abs, and to me it feels just as unattainable an ideal as the supermodel standard must feel to women.