As a foreigner, I do have to say that one of the most refreshing things about being in Jamaica is the range of female bodies viewed as not just acceptable, but straight-up sexy. Women don’t let body type or body size dictate fashion choice remotely as much as in North America. The Guinness girls are one of my favourite examples–a friend in JA once told me that he remembered a time when the Bud Light girls showed up at an event. Apparently members of the audience started yelling “FOOD!!” at the skinny, cookie-cutter women that are emblematic of the Bud Light brand. Sure, there are some skinny Guinness girls, but there are also girls that are rounded round the corners, soft in the middle and super sexy. Check my photo from last year’s Guinness Sounds of Greatness (ignore Mr. Trooper taking up the space in the front):
Continuing in this vein, as Dancehall Mobi reported yesterday, Trelawny’s Kristal Anderson (pictured below–photo from Dancehall Reality), a fluffy gyal of 200 pounds won the 2010 Dancehall Queen competition in Mo Bay this past weekend. I can’t say that this isn’t something I think is pretty darned cool.
If you can read Japanese, check 2007 Dancehall Queen Peach Gyal’s full description (and more photos) at her site: Dancehall Reality. UWI’s Sonjah Stanley-Niaah, of the recently released DanceHall: From Slave Ship to Ghetto, was, of course, in the house and on stage. Check her book for further commentary on this issue. Not only is dancehall the subject of academic study, but this was the fourth year of a scholarship program in memory of dancehall queen Shanique Taylor. Funds will benefit inner-city kids who wish to attend college or university. Female body confidence and support for education–it’s really dancehall at its best.