In the novel Bridget Jones Diary, author Helen Fielding portrays men and women as superficial observers who act on their superficial judgment and are mentally affected by this. There are many different social messages being conveyed but they all seem to be of some superficial nature. They mostly express a man or a woman’s sexual lust or interest to some extent, and are shown as superficial. One of the gestures of superficiality is Bridget’s constant documentation of her weight. It shows how her weight directly affects her appearance towards men which affects her mood from happy to sad vice versa.
Bridget states “Today is a historic and joyous day. After eighteen years of trying to get down to 119 lbs. I have finally achieved it. ”(90) and then goes on to argue how if it’s a tapeworm then its staying which shows how she’s content with whatever makes he make her attractive no matter the cost towards health. Bridget then says “I am not in love with Daniel anymore. I am free. ”(91) Which conveys how Bridget’s loss in weight made her instantly feel more confident. This shows her superficiality because she lets her weight become a gauge for how she should feel about herself which leads to her more positive thoughts.
Bridget would change her personality to adapt to situations and cause certain reactions from people like Daniel. When Daniel attempted to undo Bridget’s skirt for the first time Bridget reacted to his brash actions by denying him saying she isn’t interested. After a few weeks however, Bridget said “Still no word from Daniel. Cannot face thought of entire Sunday stretching ahead with everyone else in the world except me in bed with someone giggling and having sex. ”(37) which shows her fickleness after denying Daniel which I believe started with her talk with Sharon when she says “…
Emotional fuckwittage, which is spreading like a wildfire among men over thirty. As women glide from their twenties to thirties, Shazzer argues, the balance of power suddenly shifts. Even the most outrageous minxes lose their nerve. ”(17) This was the introduction of “Emotional fuckwittage” which was the reason that Bridget denied Daniel. This depicts that women can see through men for their desire to mess with women’s emotion by their lust. The social message being conveyed about men shows that men are only interested in sex with no regards to collateral damage to women’s emotions.
Thus Bridget let her view of men affect her emotionally. There were many portrayals of what women and men wanted out of relationships and were also based off of superficial judgments of men and women, where men wanted sex, and women wanted marriage. Throughout the book Bridget is pressured to get married by her family and acts as if there is some sort of obligation at her age to be married which is conveyed when she responds to her mom’s pressure by saying “Mum, I’ve told you. I don’t need to be fixed up with. ”(9)
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