For whilst there's nothing sexy about lung cancer, there is something erotic and aesthetically pleasing about a beautiful woman holding a cigarette and blowing smoke in your face and I say that as a non-smoker. I'm not sure this is due to advertising by the tobacco companies, who preferred female smokers to be perceived as modern independent women, rather than prone to immoral behaviour; a cigarette was meant to be a sign of freedom and equality, not deviance and depravity.
Probably Hollywood is more responsible for advancing the idea that sex and smoking belong in dangerous combination and for creating the seductive figure of a femme fatale who is always looking for some poor sap to provide her with a light. Of course, the golden age of smoking in movies belongs to the distant past. In the puritanical 21st century, studios have surrendered to pressure from anti-smoking groups and the health lobby.
In , for example, Disney - the studio that gave us one of the silver screen's great female smokers, Cruella De Vil - issued a total ban on smoking imagery in all its films.
A Lover's Discourse Quotes by Roland Barthes
Nevertheless, despite censorship and campaigns to stub out smoking once and for all - campaigns based upon overwhelming medical evidence showing a clear link between tobacco and a whole host of horrible diseases - the mythology of cigarettes and their sexiness refuses to die. Thus it is that, in the same year as the Disney ban, Dior launched a campaign for its new range of Addict lipstick available in 35 shades , featuring the American actress Jennifer Lawrence as seen above.
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A Lover’s Discourse: Fragments by Roland Barthes
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