[생글기자 코너] Lookism, a famous yet problematic idea
There is a recent idea that is taking place in the Korean society called ‘Lookism’. The main concept of this idea is this: looking good is an important feature as a human. You might have experienced or heard of it from around the world, not only when people get discriminated in job opportunities, but also in little parts like when advertisements feature good looking people to increase their brand value. There are many flaws in ranking appearances as a high priority, but it also holds some qualities as well.
The positive side of Lookism is that appearances can show if the person takes care of him/herself. If one looks clean and neat, it can give a hint to people that they are interested in keeping themselves in their best condition. Given that people who are strict to themselves are mostly helpful for others as a person or a worker, this can be a nice standard to judge people. Also, people who look good tend to be attractive leading to more people invest their attention into something which causes advertisers to star good looking people to represent their products. However, as expected, this idea has many downsides. The most broad and important concept that can explain such downsides is that lookism causes confusion between values. There are many values that humans prioritize like happiness, efficiency, quality of life, etc. However, lookism makes people think about their appearances rather than obtaining other important values and this also applies on judging people by their cover, too. Also, the advantages aren’t convincing enough. That we can judge whether one takes enough care on oneself can be replaced with other features of people like their personalities. Lookism, a quiet movement that has already took root in modern people’s lives, is an idea that has not much advantages that can overcome the disadvantages. Also, the fact that media like SNS is getting more and more developed makes people catch the wrong values. Yes, everything needs harmony and so does other values versus looks, so we cannot overlook the attention attractive appearances bring. However, we do need to remember that just because lookism is an idea followed by the majority doesn’t make it correct.
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