After the Penn Consortium of Undergraduate Women’s “Love Your Body Day” campaign last week, it seems like many Penn groups are taking a stance on issues concerning body image.
To add another voice to the discussion, the Panhellenic Council invited Stacy Nadeau — a Dove Real Beauty Campaign model — to speak at Houston Hall last night about “the definition of real beauty.”
Nadeau, a Chicago native, was last at Penn in the spring of 2011, when she inspired now College senior and Panhel Vice President of Risk Management Danielle Bernstein to ask her back on campus two years later.
Nadeau worked on a publicity campaign for Dove in 2005 that prompted a national debate over the representation of beauty by popular media.
Nadeau began last night’s talk recounting her improbable arrival on a Times Square billboard as part of the Dove campaign.
“I never wanted to model, I don’t look like a model and I don’t have time to be a model,” she added.
Her involvement in this campaign, however, began her career as a spokesperson advocating both men and women to “be [their] very own best healthy self.”
More than a rant against contemporary media and the advertisement industry, a lecture on unattainable healthy living styles or even a publicity stunt for Dove, Nadeau’s speech felt relatable.
She emphasized the pervasive nature of negative body image for women of all sizes. “It’s the same problem, different bodies,” she said.
But her goal was ultimately to “engage deep conversation” and “incite women to take care of themselves.”
Nadeau conveyed her message mainly through anecdotes. For example, she recounted a time when she struggled to fit into a pair of jeans that had just come out of the dryer, before realizing that she had better things to do than worry about her body image.
“You all have more to offer than your pant size,” she said.
Nadeau also weaved her own experience from middle school to college into her narrative, acknowledging the social pressures facing Penn women but also reminding the all-female audience, “You cannot walk around campus as a computer-generated figure.”
As Bernstein noted, “a swarm of girls” approached Nadeau after her talk. Bernstein, like many in the audience, found Nadeau “super relatable, funny and engaging.”Comments powered by Disqus
Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Pennsylvanian.