Monthly Archives: November 2012

Conformity’s Critical “Eye”

“I want to belong,” pleads a woman whose face is swathed in bandages. “I want to be like everybody.”

Nearly all of us do at one time or other. The desire to fit in can exert a seemingly irresistible force. “Conform or be cast out,” Geddy Lee sings in the Rush song “Subdivisions.” The question is, how far will we go to do so? What will it cost us? And what happens if we fail?

Perhaps more importantly, who sets the standard?

Hand Gesture1

Enter Rod Serling, and an episode of The Twilight Zone called “The Eye of the Beholder.” His 25-minute tour of a world where ugliness is a crime presents us with a terrifying specter: a society where peer pressure has been given the force of law, and conventional notions of beauty are turned on their head. Read the rest of this entry