Sisterhood Blog

First Movember, Now Decembeaver?

By Renee Ghert-Zand

  • Print
  • Share Share

Excuse me, do you know what month it is? December, you say? Actually, it’s Decembeaver — at least according to actress/comedienne Sarah Cooper and her friends.

You’re not familiar with Decembeaver? Neither were we until this video started making the social media rounds a few days ago. It’s basically a spoof on the whole Movember thing — you know, the prostate and testicular cancer fundraising gimmick whereby men grow moustaches for the entire month of November.

Well, if men can toss their razors for a month for the sake of Cancer prevention and research, then why shouldn’t women toss theirs, as well? And just as Movember focuses on letting one particular type of hair grow wild and free, so does Decembeaver. You can probably guess from the initiative’s name what we’re talking about here: pubic hair.

The video is clearly comically commenting on how charity fundraising seems to require one gimmick or another these days, but there is another loud-and-clear message — a critique on the emphasis in recent decades on women’s personal grooming “down there.”

Perhaps for younger women, the idea of letting your pubic hair grow naturally is a radical idea. But for those of us in our 40s and older, who never heard of “Brazilians,” “Sicilians” and “landing strips” in our teens, it certainly isn’t. Sure, we waxed or shaved our bikini lines, but no one ever spoke to us about the need for returning our vaginas to their pre-pubescent states.

The irrepressible British feminist writer Caitlin Moran addresses this very issue in her recently published memoir, “How To Be a Woman.” She devotes an entire chapter in her book to the subject of body hair and writes, “it is pubic hair that is now the most politically charged arena. That palm-sized triangle has come to be top-loaded with more psychosexual inference than marital status and income combined.” She doesn’t mince words, describing a “Brazilian” as “a ruinously high-maintenance, itchy, cold-looking child’s vagina.”

Moran points out that this obsessive need to remove our pubic hair is actually an adoption of pornography practices (it’s all about camera angles and lighting). And in case you haven’t heard, most of us are (thankfully) not involved in that industry. “God DAMN you, mores of pornography that have made it into my undies. GOD DAMN YOU,” Moran writes.

My hope is that Decembeaver extends into January, February, and then continues on forever. Why should women endure all that discomfort and cost in order to look unnatural? Moran says it best: “I can’t believe we’ve got to a point where it’s basically costing us money to have a vagina.… It’s a stealth tax. Muff excised. This is money we should be spending on THE ELECTRICITY BILL and CHEESE and BERETS. Instead, we’re wasting it on making our Chihuahuas look like a skanky chicken breast.”


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: cancer, decembeaver, jewish women, movember, prostate cancer, breast cancer, caitlin moran, sarah cooper

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • What does the Israel-Hamas war look like through Haredi eyes?
  • Was Israel really shocked to find there are networks of tunnels under Gaza?
  • “Going to Berlin, I had a sense of something waiting there for me. I was searching for something and felt I could unlock it by walking the streets where my grandfather walked and where my father grew up.”
  • How can 3 contradictory theories of Yiddish co-exist? Share this with Yiddish lovers!
  • "We must answer truthfully: Has a drop of all this bloodshed really helped bring us to a better place?”
  • "There are two roads. We have repeatedly taken the one more traveled, and that has made all the difference." Dahlia Scheindlin looks at the roots of Israel's conflict with Gaza.
  • Shalom, Cooperstown! Cooperstown Jewish mayor Jeff Katz and Jeff Idelson, director of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, work together to oversee induction weekend.
  • A boost for morale, if not morals.
  • Mixed marriages in Israel are tough in times of peace. So, how do you maintain a family bubble in the midst of war? http://jd.fo/f4VeG
  • Despite the escalating violence in Israel, more and more Jews are leaving their homes in Alaska to make aliyah: http://jd.fo/g4SIa
  • The Workmen's Circle is hosting New York’s first Jewish street fair on Sunday. Bring on the nouveau deli!
  • Novelist Sayed Kashua finds it hard to write about the heartbreak of Gaza from the plush confines of Debra Winger's Manhattan pad. Tough to argue with that, whichever side of the conflict you are on.
  • "I’ve never bought illegal drugs, but I imagine a small-time drug deal to feel a bit like buying hummus underground in Brooklyn."
  • We try to show things that get less exposed to the public here. We don’t look to document things that are nice or that people would like. We don’t try to show this place as a beautiful place.”
  • A new Gallup poll shows that only 25% of Americans under 35 support the war in #Gaza. Does this statistic worry you?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.