I changed my hair to fluffy curls last week and the compliments rained down on me. Gee, I thought I was good-lookin’ with straight hair.
Studies show that good-lookin’ people get better service, faster promotions, and whole bunch of other goodies just because they’re attractive. I never thought that was fair.
Still, though, when it comes to our strong women in history, do they have to be good-lookin’ too?
Take Cleopatra, for instance. Every movie star who ever played her was attractive, including the violet-eyed Elizabeth Taylor.
Roman historian Cassius Dio described Cleopatra as “a woman of surpassing beauty” who was “brilliant to look upon.”
But writing more than a century earlier, Greek historian Plutarch said “her beauty… was in itself not altogether incomparable, nor such as to strike those who saw her.”
In other words, Plutarch is saying she was kinda plain.
We think that since Cleopatra had amorous relationships with two powerful men, Julius Caesar and Marc Anthony, she must have been good-lookin’.
What if she wasn’t? What if she had a lot of other things that made her attractive? Like wit, charm, and smarts?
That’s how I like to think of Cleopatra.
Not good-lookin’. But smart.