Monday, May 7, 2012

"You don't know your beautiful" One Direction

        Nobody's perfect is something we are told our entire lives. Yet for some reason everyone is constantly trying to fix things they consider mistakes. The media is one of the biggest offenders in warping people's ideas of what is perfection. We constantly see models and actresses on covers of magazines looking "perfect". This is only an illusion. Photoshop is only a temporary fix to something permanent. When that isn't enough, we have ads on TV constantly trying to get us to buy the newest make-up product or diet pill. People don't realize that the people in those ads don't actually look like that, even when they do use the product. Before the commercial was shot, they spent hours in hair, make-up, and wardrobe to create the illusion that they look perfect. Everyone has a flaw, whether its visible or can be hidden. The only one that is telling us that we aren't perfect is ourselves. In the short story "The Birth-Mark" by Nathaniel Hawthorne, Aylmer and Georgiana both represent some aspect of trying to find and create perfection.
          Aylmer is a scientist. He believes that there is a reason to everything and nothing happens by accident. He is the logical of the two. He represents people's obsessions with obtaining perfection. He shows us how obsessed some people get when he says, "I might well dream of it; for, before i fell asleep, it had taken a pretty firm hold of my fancy" (Hawthorne 221). It is a humans greatest flaw, our desire for perfection. Aylmer is s horrified by this one little mark on his wife's face. He sees it as "the symbol of his wife's liability to sin, sorrow, decay, and death" (Hawthorne 220). As most humans are, he is so sure that he can correct nature's mistake. He convinces her of this when he says, "I am convinced of the perfect practicality of its removal" (Hawthorne 221). Aylmer doesn't see why he should leave the mark if he has the power to fix it. He doesn't understand that somethings are out of even science's reach. He is a perfect example of the human drive to obtain perfection.
           Georgiana is the opposite of her husband. He is perfectly content with the mark. She even tells her husband, "it has been so often called a charm, that i was simple enough to imagine it might be so" (Hawthorne 219). She starts to see the mark as a flaw when her husband says something about it. Georgiana represents flawed beauty and insecurity about one's image. Before her husband, she had many suitors. She is described as beautiful. After her husband, she lost her self esteem. Hawthorne shows you how low her opinion of herself is when he says, "Georgiana soon learned to shudder at his gaze. It needed but a glance with a peculiar expression that his face often wore to change the roses of her cheeks into a deathlike paleness, amid which the crimson hand was brought strongly out, like a bas relief of a ruby on the whitest marble" (Hawthorne 220). She allows him to experiment on her so that she can get rid of the flaw. The problem with this is that perfection is impossible. As soon as the birth mark disappears, Georgiana dies. Hawthorne does this to show that nothing on earth is perfect. It is our flaws that make us who we are. Perfection does not exist, therefore Georgiana, without the mark, could not continue to exist.
          Humanity's greatest flaw is our drive for perfection. Why do we continue to look for ways to correct our flaws when we know it is impossible? We continue hoping that someday, maybe we could obtain perfection. We could make all flaws go away. Nature, however, has a different plan. People are going to always be born with flaws. The sooner humanity realizes this, the sooner we can stop the insane attempt to reach the impossible.

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