Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Pride & Prudery A Question of Modesty?

In these days of almost anything goes where do we draw the line between modesty and prudery?

I remembered once attending a bible study where the topic of nudity came up. A young woman insisted that such Art as the statue of David should be covered up, in fact she suggested that someone put a pair of shorts on this piece of Art, the lady in question was NOT joking. She also went on to say that any painting which depicted the nude form should be painted over showing women dressed, this included the Art work of Rubens. What began this topic was that this lady had drawn over her illustrated Bible where the naked form of Adam and Eve were displayed.

This is not modesty but prudery, there is NO shame in the naked form so long as it is not used for a lascivious purposes.

The same can be said of movies such as the two versions of Pride and Prejudice. One being the movie version starring Keira Knightley and the other BBC version starring Jennifer Ehle. I see nothing wrong in dressing the actresses in the dress period of the day. In the case of Keira Knightley who has now become incredibly thin and Jennifer Ehle who has a more fulsome figure both women wore the same period outfits, yet because of Jennifer Ehle's fuller figure the outfit bares more flesh than the Keira Knightley movie.

The story in itself is not pornographic if anything it is a romantic story, which in typical Austen fashion is also a subtle social commentary of the hypocrisies of the day.

We need to understand that if one starts squirming because they are viewing such Great Art works as the Statue of David or admiring the works of Rubens, then that is NOT modesty but prudery.

The same goes for watching different versions of Pride and Prejudice, the story is not pornographic and neither version portrayed it as such, therefore both should be admired for staying true to the story as written by Jane Austen.

It is a good thing to dress modestly and appropriately but it is never a good thing to be ashamed of our bodies as if God had created something loathesome.

We need to keep things in perspective, while not falling into scrupulosity.