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December 20, 2007


Argentina's awesome president

Cristina Fernandez de Kirschner

This is a picture of Argentina's president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, at a graduation event at a military school outside Buenos Aires.

Look at her. That fan, the pose, the exposed thigh.

Now think about Hillary Clinton, and to what lengths she would go to make sure that no picture of her sitting like this while holding a fan at a state function ever surfaced.

Like Clinton, Kirchner is the wife of a former popular president, to whom she owes pretty much all of her political success. Nestor Kirchner stepped down from the presidency earlier this year so that she could run. She won easily, all the while wearing gobs of mascara and flashy suits and loud jewelry.

As the Times of London wrote in comparing the two women, "While every fashion move that Clinton makes is relentlessly analyzed for its potential impact on voters in Iowa – from her latest hair-style to whether or not she laughs too loudly - Kirchner has gaily shrugged off accusations that she is 'frivolous'."

In keeping with her usual aesthetic, which my friend Trash Rock describes as "retired cheerleader", Kirchner wears suits like this:

Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner

and adopts poses like this in TV interviews:

Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner

And nobody cares! Can you IMAGINE Hillary Clinton with this body language, looking all languorous and kittenish on the air? Americans would flip out. Sure, Kirchner got elected mainly because voters assume that her policies will be nearly identical to her husband's, but many Clinton supporters probably feel the same way.

The problem is, American campaign strategists seem sure that if Hillary looks good on purpose, she opens herself up to criticism and stereotyping. Obama looked great on the cover of GQ, and I would have been glad to see Hillary in that non-dowdy Vogue photo shoot she backed out of last month. You can bet she would have gotten shit for it, even without holding a fan. Poor Hillary, stuck with her pantsuits.

categories: Gender, International, Politics
posted by amy at 4:55 PM | #

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You want to know the "reason" why Hillary's campaign doesn't "feminize" Hillary?

Google the term "Hillary Clinton Cleavage" and watch with dismay the number of links to news sites (including supposedly MSM sites like MSNBC and The Washington Post) actually discussing in great detail the possible meaning of Hillary, during a Senate speech, having the top button of her blouse unbuttoned and her choice of bras revealing something underneath that's almost completely unique to a woman. And keep in mind that this button (at least I think there was one) was not undone during the speech - or anywhere near a camera.

Fox News female anchors show much more "cleavage" on a typical broadcast than Hillary did on that day, but with the reaction from just one button undone, one would have thought that Hillary had posed nude for Playboy (and with the perverted voyeuristic quality of the debate about her "cleavage," that Playboy issue would become Playboy's best selling issue ever).

In other words, the press corps in the United States run around like a bunch of 13 year-old boys getting excited because they looked down the schoolteacher's blouse and saw something "new." And now their pants are uncomfortable.

(I apologize for the tone of the last paragraph. I am, however, at a real loss on describing the level of crassness and immaturity in the US Press, especially when it comes to certain women in politics.)

Posted by: Heavy Armor at December 26, 2007 3:40 AM

Very inpressive. I wish her and the people of Argentia good luck!

Posted by: Ames Tiedeman at January 1, 2008 7:52 PM


I think you overlook the cultural differences in your analysis.

Argentina is still a country where differences between men and women are very noticeable in all aspects. In Argentina, women still use rather short skirts; in the USA women tend to wear pants. In Argentina, a 50 something year old woman can wear her hair, somehow long - if she has a pretty face -, while in the USA not even the 20 something year olds wear long hair. Do you see what I mean?

At the end of the day, what matters is how Hillary will govern our country if elected President, not how femenine or not femenine she appears.

Posted by: Cristina at April 4, 2008 2:08 PM


There are differences indeed. What happens is that Argentine women have always celebrated their femininity. They enjoy being females and they love looking good, regardless of age. Looking good and feminine is precisely a way to say "I LIKE BEING A FEMALE. I ENJOY THE FACT THAT I AM A WOMAN. SO, I CELEBRATE IT." Mind you, that Argentine women are not only glamorous but intelligent, articulate and well educated and mannered. That is all part of their culture. They do not try to compete with men thinking that to do that, they ought to look like males. They know that they can compete with their smarts without neglecting the feminine traits which they themselves appreciate as well as their male counterparts. Women in Argentina dress nicely and keep in shape, keep their hair nice, etc. not so much for the males but for themselves. Looking good is feeling good. And I am not talking about mascara use and hair done. Because you can see an Argentine woman with no makeup and still looks great. It is the way they carry themselves, their confidence. The celebration of femininity.

Posted by: Athena at September 4, 2008 8:24 AM


Posted by: EXU LEVANTA-SAIA at December 14, 2008 7:26 AM

To hell with the feminazis. As for De Kirchner, how I would love to pry those legs open.

Posted by: rmm at September 18, 2009 8:52 AM

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