The New Yorker’s Jia Tolentino has written extensively about modern-day feminism and the intense pressures women face to present “ideal” versions of themselves. In a recent interview with the PBS NewsHour’s Jeffrey Brown, the author of “Trick Mirror” said that this pressure “to always be better looking and sweeter and more likable and just more appealing” is amplified by the internet, where women have monetized these qualities through channels such as the so-called “influencer” industry.
This is why, when she decided to have a baby, the one thing Tolentino was “unequivocally excited” about was the opportunity it presented for what she called “total ego death.” Tolentino said that although many of the pressures she faced to perfect her outward appearance were already fading by the time she got pregnant, they seem even more “ludicrous when you have a crying infant in your arms.”
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