By Brianna Savoca
Popular country-pop crossover artist Taylor Swift's award-winning music video for "You Belong With Me" exhibits the harsh realities of the politics of pretty.
Taylor Swift plays a duel role- the blonde, curly-haired, simple, geeky, girl next door in the band AND the dark-haired, pretty, popular cheerleading captain. At the start of the video, blonde band geek Taylor envies the relationship between her handsome neighbor and the brunette cheerleading captain.
Taylor describes all the aesthetic differences between the two in the chorus:
"She wears short skirts, I wear t-shirts, She's cheer captain, and I'm on the bleachers..."
Taylor basically insinuates throughout the song that the only thing the cheerleader has is looks. Still, the boyfriend seems to be choosing looks over substance.
Click HERE to watch the video.
IN REAL LIFE
While this is just a music video, these situations occur in high schools, colleges, bars, the workplace, and almost any social setting around the country.
People formulate opinions and base social interactions and relationships often on looks alone. Substance and personality may matter eventually, but in general, people judge others primarily on their first impression of their appearance.
Why else would we have the colloquial phrase "Love at first sight?"
THE POLITICS OF PRETTY
So how do the Politics of Pretty play out in Taylor Swift's "You Belong With Me" music video?
Despite the fact that the video shows the connection between blonde Taylor and her handsome crush as friends, he does not seem to notice her as a potential girlfriend until
blonde Taylor gets a makeover.
Taylor shows up at the high school dance without her big glasses, wearing a sparkly white dress and makeup.
Now the boy next door finally takes notice.
Once again, it is appearance over substance, a.k.a. the Politics of Pretty.