Thursday, July 6, 2017

Hegel & the logic of the "real" Barbie

Nyadak, the black Barbie

aLfreDo tRifF

This news from Nyadak Thot, the stunning black Barbie from Sudan made me think of Valerie Lukyanova, the white Barbie from Ukraine and this m.bourbaki post from 2012, which applies to both Nyadak and Valerie. Here it goes:

Do you know Valerie Lukyanova, the "real" Barbie?

Being the "real," she is more than her role model, the famed Barbie Doll:

the Barbie Doll

In what sense is the "real" more than the doll? It's human!

Valerie's impressive transitioning shows she has achieved her doll/ideal in the flesh. She possesses a more than, leaving dollness behind. But wait, isn't this more than not, as well, automatically, a less than?*

The "real" Barbie is sort of a truer version, but being @ this fullness, it immediately enters a perplexing state of vacancy. From now on, nothing can be realer than it.** Undeniably, with this new in-between category Valerie attains what the doll could only aspire to, but the "real" also signals its own lack.

G. F. Hegel has a telling paragraph in his Logic, under the title "Being determinate": 
... in becoming, the being which is one with nothing, and the nothing which is one with being, are only vanishing factors; they are and are not. Thus by its inherent contradiction becoming collapses into the unity in which the two elements are absorbed. This result is accordingly being determinate (being there and so). (p. 133)
This is no galimatias: the being of "real" is determinate. "Being there and so" is Valerie, the "real" Barbie. She finally filled with flesh-and-bones what used to be a mere doll/ideal (caveat: as old Heraclitus suggests things are never static).

Meanwhile, Valerie is petrified in her own determinate "real" category. She's more than automatically stopped in her tracks.

She won't be able to overcome another more than.

Valerie, the white Barbie

The question persists: Now that Valerie embodies the "real," what would a "realer" Barbie be? 

*If the human needs dollness to become "real," being human is far from the measure -as it were (a pretty girl is called "a doll"). Meanwhile the doll forever persists in its dollness. ** A "superreal" would not solve the paradox, it would actually augment it: to a "superreal," one merely adds a higher order, "super(superreal)" and so on.


Ernesto A. Soto said...

I honestly don’t understand why anyone would want to do something like this to themselves but then again we are living in very strange times. By becoming a “real Barbie” this woman has made herself seem extremely fake because that’s exactly what Barbie is, fake. This is one of those boundaries that should never be crossed because the results are nothing less than horrifying. To me every other woman in the world is more real than the ‘real Barbie”.

Feminista said...

Man you're such a riot. You know what? I'm showing this to my ARH students.

Paul Lee said...

Finally someone has the guts to stand out among the masses and glorify,the desires and wishes of conditioned individuals.I feel this lady took a broad step towards reality. I am not condoning her actions but, merely accepting the realism of vanity. she has brought to light the modeled fixation that has plague american culture for over 50 years. This doll has been the source of role playing for many children over the years. Males and females of different ethnic backgrounds have been conditioned to accept lighter toned dolls as sociably acceptable. In fact that darker toned dolls were made to look unacceptable so that people who identified with their skin tones would think of them selves as inferior.I do believe this is a major set back for females respectfully, but than again its not like she hasn't copied or created more competition for all of us living in this Barbie world.

Paul Lee said...

I wonder if she had finally solve the issue with the belladonna plant. Woman used to utilize the belladonna plant for their eyes, this plant would help them achieve glossy bright eyes. Having accomplished this feature the woman started dying off like flies.

Anonymous said...

As a child most girls idolize the perfect physical complexion of a Barbie. Perfect hair, nails, skin color, eyes; what appeals to your eyes. As you mature however it is up to a parent/guardian to teach a developing mind about morals and values. The difference between love and lust, true self appreciation and vanity. Due to this lack of guidance some people fall into the pits of worldly desires and are never able to climb out. They sink themselves deeper and deeper as they try to fit the mold that society has engraved into their minds. They spend the most valuable years of their lives as slaves trying to satisfy the manmade representation of what beauty is, what happiness is. When really, imperfection is the true beauty of the world around us. The world we are a part of. However in the end, the unfortunate truth is, many will walk this earth their whole lifetime under this blindfold pass it down generations and feed this vicious circle endlessly.
Celeste Guerra

Malagodi said...

So what we have here is two separate phenomenae.

One, the subject of the story, is of a person deliberately moulding a physical representation of an idealized, fabricated identity. The same as did Elvis, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Prince, Gaga, countless drag queens, and so forth. What makes these people interesting is the deliberative, conscious process made manifest in public. This sets them apart from the rest of us boring assholes who engage in this construction in a mostly unconscious way, without much deliberation, and in secret.

The other phenomenon is that of a group of people, I assume mostly men, once again engaging in the bimbo, vacant beach-girl, dumb-blond, sex-toy fantasy.

The real question being asked here is how is this person different than; is she 'more real' than the sex-toy doll after which she has modeled her persona.

Oh well, I guess, Hegel or not, we'll never know the answer to this stupid question. Any more than, except perhaps on our dying day, we can answer the same question about ourselves.

Edwar Leon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Alfredo Triff said...

thanks ernesto. good point about the fakeness. though in a way she becomes a "new original."

tx, femin.

paul, what i know is that belladona can be pretty dangerous.

good point, celeste. thanks.

malagodi: the first phenomenon... definitely!

edwar, thanks for the link!

Carlos Osorio said...

In my opinion I think this is something very similar to cosplay ( but actually taking it to a higher level because you are not simply impersonifying the character for a certain amount of time but yo actually become the character permanently and I think this is something that it's gonna start to expand in this generation

Feminists said...

Why do men exist, this Barbie is my dream Barbie, I hate men they don't deserve to exist. Men make women think that we are suppose to love men. Women and Women relationships are beautiful. All my ex girlfriends have cheated on me over and over again with men. They say that men can give them something I can't but I give them something he can't and love, how can a man even compete.

Feminista said...

Why do men exist, this Barbie is my dream Barbie, I hate men they don't deserve to exist. Men make women think that we are suppose to love men. Women and Women relationships are beautiful. All my ex girlfriends have cheated on me over and over again with men. They say that men can give them something I can't but I give them something he can't and love, how can a man even compete.

Anonymous said...

What is life, YOLO you only live once, I smoke blunts while these Barbies need a job climbing poles. They need to dance at Tootsies. They will make money crazy money

atRifF said...

well, feminist (or is it "feminista"... are you "the real" feminista?). feminism and lesbianism do not necessarily include nor exclude each other.

Crystal Palmer said...

Why do men exist? So you can.Our civilization cannot go on without them.there was a man involved for you to exist. whether you like him or not, without him you are literally nothing. There is no point to hate an entire gender based on your personal sexual orientation.

Daniella Lopez said...

Imagine the "real Barbie" aging. How will she confront this deficiency in comparison to her forever immortalized plastic counterpart? Also, there is speculation that she weighs about 90 lbs at an average woman's height (about 5' 5") and at an adult's age. This doesn't see, to only be a case of image perfection, but perhaps can be a pinker, cuter version of an eating disorder; if we remember that eating disorders are founded on the same obsessive control of one's image above and beyond what is healthy for a human body.

atRifF said...

Neat, Daniella!

Sharlene. said...

The human Barbie doll is not something that can be defined as 'anti-feminist' or innately bad she, the human barbie doll, has accomplished her dream of being a doll that was most certainly created only to highlight the unreachable ideals of it's creator. Kudos to Valerie Lukyanova. Now let's look at this not from a consumer's perspective, or from a parental porint of view, let's look at it from a homosapien point of view.
As animals we humans are draw to each other by hormones, symmetry, and many other factors. What we see everyday are people of our same genders, and of the opposite, whether they are attractive or not; we do not see life size dolls. Let's say there was a model (male or female), who is unquestionably beautiful, walking down the street and on the other side of the street is Valerie, the human Barbie, walking the same direction, who would the public respond more positively to? Yes, at first glance they might say Barbie was more attractive, but upon continually looking at her may find that she is almost alien.
Humans like natural looks, whether they are natural by birth, or made to look natural. People will more readily say a model is attractive after really looking at Valerie. Her visual appearance is based on that of a made up toy therefore she gives the appearance of being false and nonexisting. We can't really say she has a good personality either, because I'm sure much of it has been invested into becoming Barbie, that perhaps she's developed a personality based off of what she believes barbie would be like. Yes, she has become a paradox. How can anything she says be truly her?

Naima Mompoint said...

First of all, they really look like barbies impressive. When i'm watching this what is in mind is ok now what's next. But, why not going deep into it. What make a girl do such a thing to themselves;Maybe they have self esteem issue or maybe they love barbie too much, maybe all their live they been taught that they look like barbie. Only them know why they do such a thing. The motivation of doing this is not normal, they have some psychological problem going on. It is not healthy either educative to the next generation whose watching this.

Allen Ayzen said...

I think the whole idea of being the barbie doll in general symbolizes society as a whole. We are so obsessed with our own imperfections we lose sight of what is reality and what we conceive to be reality. The idea of a barbie doll from the beginning of its creation was a figure of perfection. The beauty and lifestyle all perfected. I think the idea of plastic surgery and implants and any UNNATURAL change to our bodies defeats the idea of individuality and uniqueness. So I think it can be understood that people will change their imperfections but I dont not support the action. A barbie is a symbol of perfection but truly, it is our imperfections that make us perfect. -Allen Ayzen

atRifF said...

tx sharlene, naima and allen.

Edwar Ricardo said...

So this chick is a Barbie, well I can only imagine what is going to happen to females in a couple years. This girl started this but I have no doubt in my mind that it will become a trend someday.

Anonymous said...

First came Barbie, then came women's rights, next came cosmetic surgery, and now we have this. I mean, technically, I think this was what commercial advertisment originally intended by coming up with Barbie, they just had to get women to want it too. Afterall, if women try to keep up with an appearance like this into their old age(which I see them having to do), the cosmetic surgery industry will be set(possibly surpassing even the drug industry?). The original ideal behind Barbie ignited and will continually fuel the cosmetic industry. People are so hypnotized by this idea of perfection, that I think they need to see something like this "real Barbie" to take themselves out of the trance.
With words being arbitrary, I agree that this woman is both more and less "realER" than Barbie herself. More as in breathing, and less as in less plastic.

Alfredo Triff said...

thanks, edwar. it's already a trend.

melissa: so it's a full circle! i like this: "more and less "realER" than Barbie herself. More as in breathing, and less as in less plastic."

Marcos Juarez said...

To be honest, I don't know if I really meet met a "real-life" Barbie because she looks like a Barbie doll. Is just that many girls and young women (I don't know if they did) played with dolls. What I agree on is that many of these young women want to be like a Paris Hilton or a Lady Gaga because I obviously learned that women are obsessed with fashion and they buy the latest fashion items in stock. But I'm afraid of the whole modeled fixation problem because it is obviously to say that she is trying to be (and I hate insult to somebody) a faker because maybe she wants to have plastic surgery and she did.

Kurt Cobaine said...

I need you, you need me
We make the perfect kind of misery
I help you and you help me
Become the one I swore I'd never be
The one that I don't ever want be

I like the way you won't apologize
I like the way you just demoralize
I like the way you always roll your eyes
Someone as perfect as you
Is hard to criticize

Suppress this, this hatred
I stand beside you while you soak it in
Spit on me I taste it
I love you more and you just fake it
I want you more and you just fake it

I like the way
You won't apologize
I like the way
You just demoralize
I like the way
You always roll your eyes
Someone as perfect as you
Is hard to criticize

roudelet remy said...

I honestly not understand like any body can do do this to themselves but then again we are living in a very stanges times. BY becoming a real barbie this girl made herself seem very very extremely fake because tat's exatlu what barbie is, a fake.This one of the problem that should nerver be happen because the result are nothing less than terrifying. for me every other girl in the world is more real than the real barbie.

roudelet remy

Malagodi said...

and how is this any different? answer, this guy had money. so he (?) was both respected and mourned.