When the 'Weaker Sex' became the 'Beauty symbol' - The Feminine Beauty in the Romanian Interwar Press

AuthorFanel Teodorascu
ISSN: 2067 9211 Interdisciplinary Dimensions of Communication Science
When the “Weaker Sex” became the “Beauty symbol” – The Feminine
Beauty in the Romanian Interwar Press
Fănel Teodoraşcu1
Abstract: Among the important changes brought about by the early years of t he interwar period in the
life of the woman was the fact that she, the woman, was no longer regarded as the “weak” half of man, as
it had been before, but the “beautiful” half. Another feature of the interwar era is that beauty is no longer
old. The desire of the interwar woman, regardless of her social status or her age, of being always beautiful
was explained by the fact that a beautiful woman was easier to find a job or get into the business world.
For some journalists, lipstick and last fashion clothes were specific to women of mild morals. Most of the
texts used for this paper were published in the years between the two world wars.
Keywords: beauty; history of the press; interwar period; newspaper; media
What is and what is not a Woman
More than a decade before the period specified in the title of this paper, in the first issue of the
magazine “Moda/Fashion”, which was released on October 8, 1905, the article “Cartea de aur a
femeii: Femeia și femeile/Woman's Gold Book: Woman and Women” was published. The quoted text
has attracted our attention for several reasons. First, the author of the text defines the woman. So the
woman is a complex creature, which makes her different from the feminist, which is, at least in some
cases, “a sexless being”. This complexity referred to by the author of the article makes, for example,
that women, even those with poor education, can easily climb “the steps of the social ladder” and,
once entering the salons of the high society, leave a good impression to those who they come to know
her. The woman is not only different from the feminist (the “sexless being”), but also from the man
who, when coming from a lower social class, will never be able to integrate into the high society and
thus will always be a parvenu. The woman differs from the man also by possessing a fine intellect, and
he is often brutal. In a woman-man relationship, he is the master, who, in many cases, preying on
prejudices, forgets that his mission is to support her.
After he shows what the woman is, the author of the text reveals what she has to do to remain what
nature has created her for - the creature that completes the man. So, if the woman does not want to
become a bad and snappy creature, she must do it in such a way as to remain the creature to which
nature has given her grace, courage and moral gentleness. The author warns, however, that a woman
must be mindful when she uses the gifts she has received from nature. To always be seductive, the
1 Senior Lecturer, PhD, Danubius University of Galati, Romania, Address: 3 Galati Blvd., Galati 800654, Romania, Tel.:
+40372361102, E-mail: teodorascu.fanel@univ-danubius.ro.

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