The Last Triangle: Sex, Money and the Politics of Pubic Hair
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This paper provides the theoretical component to a blog I wrote as part of an academic program in Cultural Studies for a period from March 2, 2011 until September 30, 2011. Called The Last Triangle: Sex, Money and the Politics (http://www.thelasttriangle.com), I set out to explore the increasing normalization of pubic hair removal among women in North America. The reasons for the upswing in the popularity of pubic hair removal are hard to pinpoint, but seem to be motivated by a number of forces. From the ready accessibility of pornography, where pubic hair is currently so rare it has spawned its own fetish, to the widespread attention Brazilian waxing has received in the media, pubic hair removal is merely one among a myriad of body grooming practices many women increasingly indicate they feel obliged follow. This paper will explore some of those ideas, taking a critical view of the practice in light of questions around performing femininity, how pubic hair removal pertains to body control, and how pubic hair removal is, for many, increasingly viewed as a practice closely connected with good hygiene. Because it is intimately tied to the purchase of dedicated products, pubic hair removal will also be considered in as much as it relates to capitalism. Because the blog was a fundamental component of my research experience, excerpts of both my own writing, as well as comments from readers, will be included in conversation here with the theoretical questions.