Esquire on Aung San Suu Kyi: An honor? A “Dubious Achievement”?

Esquire magazine — which for years entertained readers with year-end wrap-ups of “Dubious Achievements,” or pop-culture missteps — has just named Burmese democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi one of the magazine’s “Sexiest Women Alive.”

My first reaction was that this was in itself a dubious achievement, pure and simple. But then, I read the magazine’s short write-up about Suu Kyi:

This is what a rebel does: meets violent suppression from freedom with words (“It is not power that corrupts but fear”), risks her life for democracy, gets elected prime minister only to have Myanmar’s military force her out, wins a Nobel Peace Prize for it, gets imprisoned for twenty years for it, and begins her release fighting for one thing and one thing only: the right to vote. Amen. [Via]
Sure, “sexy” may be in the eye of the beholder, and sure, some will say that bestowing such a title is a sexist act. It certainly does have the air of a disconnect. But maybe that’s the point, and at least Esquire has recognized something truly, endlessly beautiful here. And the more people who are aware of that beauty, the better. No?

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