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Joanna Weiss

Shame, fame, and the body politic

I DON’T REMEMBER who won the best screenplay awards at the Academy Awards on Sunday night. All I recall is Angelina Jolie’s leg. Jutting out from a massive slit in Jolie’s dress, as she presented the awards in a dominatrix pose, the leg stole the show. It practically ate the Oscars. By Monday afternoon, the Twitter feed @AngiesRightLeg had more than 15,000 followers.

Body parts were all the rage at the Oscars, actually; a crop of mostly forgettable films upstaged by Jolie’s leg (not to mention her disturbingly thin arms), Esperanza Spalding’s fabulous hair, and Jennifer Lopez’s breasts, which spawned a new debate about potential wardrobe malfunctions. (There is also now a Twitter feed for @JLosNipple.) Our culture loves the physical particulars of women; at this point, the Oscars are less about movies than about the opportunity to gawk at actresses and their clothes.

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