Friday, January 02, 2009
Both of these women are attractive and yet one is more beautiful than the other. Both were contemporaries and both were the object of much media speculation. Both met tragic ends. One died alone and unhappy by a barbiturate overdose, the other a princess in a car accident
I suppose the question to ask is, what makes these women attractive? Which of course leads to the question, what is attractiveness anyway?
I shall posit an answer: Attraction is a force that compels us towards its source. It can also be thought of as like magnetism, in that it has "polarity". The thing in possession of an attractive feature can be thought of as "positive", while the thing deficient of the attractive possession can be thought of as the "negative" pole of the force. Therefore a proper understanding of attraction involves the analysis of both poles. The potential of attractiveness therefore comes form the "potential difference in attribute" between the attractive and the attracted.
An individuals total attractiveness can be thought of as the rough sum of the attractive potentials of an individuals attributes when considered in from the point of view of the attracted. Therefore deficiencies in one area may be made up by excesses in another.
Marilyn Monroe's attractiveness lay in her sexuality and in her ability to project it, and while she is physically attractive, I don't think one could call her beautiful. Her attractiveness lays in the potential for sexual satisfaction, which would appear to be in abundance. However she appears mono dimensional in having nothing else to offer. (Remember I'm only talking about her appearance)
Grace Kelly's attractiveness lay in feminine beauty. The is also a sense of sexuality in Grace Kelly but it seems subordinated to her overall femininity, her sexuality is more restrained and refined. There is a sense of "grace", in Grace Kelly which is absent in Marilyn Monroe. So while she does not appear as sexual a Marilyn Monroe, she satisfies on many different planes. The sum of her many attractive potentials are greater than Marilyn's superlative one.
However the other point to consider is that of the attracted. A person who just wants to "get laid" is going to find Monroe more attractive than Kelly, but a person seeking beauty, sophistication and sex will find Kelly more attractive than Monroe. Monroe's attractiveness in more primal, Kelly's attractiveness more refined. Since civilised pleasures are refined pleasures, Kelly is the objectively more beautiful.
Saying that though, I would not of married either. Both were promiscuous before they were married. Big turn off.