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Ugly Duckling

April 29, 2010

I found this around the interwebs today:

I like this image because it reminds me of Kate Harding’s idea of The Fantasy of Being Thin which is a pretty fucking awesome concept, and very true. So go read some KH and think about the implications of the moral of The Ugly Duckling.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. April 30, 2010 1:11 PM


  2. Skye permalink
    April 30, 2010 2:43 PM

    Whether or not the duckling was “pretty” or “ugly” isn’t the moral of that story. Seems like you and that artist missed that.

  3. Emily permalink
    April 30, 2010 5:05 PM

    I don’t agree- it’s the story of a duckling who was ridiculed for being ugly but then grows up to be a beautiful swan instead of a normal-looking duck. I’m pretty sure the moral was that sometimes the most ‘beautiful’ among us just take some time to develop. The artist is just wondering what happens after: now that this duckling has become a beautiful swan (what he’s wanted his whole life), what is he going to do? Does his life really change for the better? Or is he the same, with the same personality, the same problems, only prettier?

    • Jill permalink
      April 30, 2010 9:10 PM

      I think Emily’s exactly right. All I wanted to add was that there’s a secondary moral to the story–the sort of, “don’t judge a book by its cover” platitude–that I think would be an equally interesting candidate for analysis. Because it seems to me that the story suggest, don’t treat someone badly because you’ll never know if they’ll grow up to be beautiful. What if the ugly duckling had stayed ugly? He would be no less worthy of respect, kind treatment, and self-worth.

      This is a point I think Kate Harding’s post approaches tangentially as well: there is no better you. The you right now is pretty awesome, and you should just go ahead and rock it rather than waiting for the emergence of the “skinny person inside you” (which apparently exists in all fat people?) who is worth all the dreams you have for yourself.

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