Would you vote for this woman? Or read her column? Don Arthur did (the latter anyway) … I wonder why Miranda hasn’t lectured Julia Gillard on her hairstyle yet?
Why bother with scholarly research when you have television? In a recent study, Amy King and Andrew Leigh found that physically attractive politicians tended to attract more votes than their less attractive colleagues. But Miranda Devine isn’t having a bar of it, “You only have to watch question time to know the idea that we choose our politicians based on beauty is laughable,” she says.
In a learned paper peppered with jargon and buttressed with three pages of references, Leigh rates 286 politicians on their attractiveness and compares it to their vote. At a time when ALP deputy leader Julia Gillard is being reduced to her haircut, this line of critique is hardly a positive step for female politicians, who are judged harshly enough on their looks without being conscripted into an academic’s beauty pageant.
Hardly a positive step for female politicians? What about female academics? In her concern for the plight of Julia Gillard, Devine somehow forgets to mention Leigh’s co-author Amy King.
King has a keen interest in women’s issues. She coordinated the Shattering Ceilings: Young Women & Leadership Forum which gathered together 100 young women from around South Australia. And she’ll probably survive being overlooked by Miranda Devine. King recently won a Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford University.
Perhaps someone should do a study of the effect of physical attractiveness on the credibility of newspaper columnists.