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  1. #1
    Rats off to ya! Mort Belfry's Avatar
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    Default Why don't women faint anymore?

    I was just watching Gosford Park and whilst doing so it occurred to me that films that are set in early last century, and possibly before, have a lot of women fainting scenes.

    Now is it just a myth, or are there social reasons why women don't faint anymore? Is it just not cool to faint now, or was it only the women that wanted attention that used to do it? Was it because the clothes they used to wear were so tight and impractical, like those stupid corset things, that a simple gasp would empty the lungs and render the poor girl without oxygen? Was a faint just an exaggerated swoon of emotion? Or were they just seizures and panic attacks?

    Do women still faint? Do men ever faint? I've never seen anyone of all the variations of the two sexes faint in real life. Does anyone know anyone else that faints a lot? What is a faint anyway? What's happening in neurological terms? Should I have looked up wikipedia before posting this?

    If anyone knows the definitive answer, please don't post it straight away. I'd rather hear some people's bizarre theories first.
    Why do we always come here?

    I guess we'll never know.

    It's like a kind of torture,
    To have to watch this show.

  2. #2
    a white iris elfinchilde's Avatar
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    *jumps up like an over-enthusiastic eager beaver student* I know the answer! pick me pick me!

    because the corsets worn strangle the floating ribs (which men don't have), such that if they turned fast, the oxygen would be cut off; hence the fainting spells. They could only take shallow breaths all the while; so their lungs were never quite filled completely with oxygen. A person faints if there is insufficient oxygen transported to the brain. try breathing shallowly for about 5 min, you'll get what i mean.

    edit: for anyone who DOESN'T wanna know so early, don't read. it's in white for a reason.
    You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;
    They called me the hyacinth girl.
    Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinth garden,
    Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could not
    Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither
    Living nor dead, and I knew nothing,
    Looking into the heart of light, the silence.

    --T.S Eliot, The Wasteland

  3. #3
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    I knew it

    Hint in white for those who are not sure but don't want to read the answer straight away: Think "Pirates of the Caribbeans", the first one

  4. #4
    Rats off to ya! Mort Belfry's Avatar
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    I knew it! But I didn't want to seem too sure about it, as I hadn't heard about floating ribs before. How brutal, that must have sucked, did they still wear corsets under evening dresses?

    And do you think the association with fainting has damaged womenkind's credibility as a result, with men assuming that any sudden emotion would leave a woman unconcious?

    Do women never wear corsets at all any more? Would girdles ever do the same?
    Why do we always come here?

    I guess we'll never know.

    It's like a kind of torture,
    To have to watch this show.

  5. #5
    a white iris elfinchilde's Avatar
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    ^ good one, Wandering!

    and ooh. Johnny Depp. *fans herself*
    You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;
    They called me the hyacinth girl.
    Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinth garden,
    Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could not
    Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither
    Living nor dead, and I knew nothing,
    Looking into the heart of light, the silence.

    --T.S Eliot, The Wasteland

  6. #6
    Permabanned
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    The most amusing fainting scene in a movie that I know of was in Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.

  7. #7
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    (This color thing is fun )

    Quote Originally Posted by Mort Belfry View Post
    How brutal, that must have sucked, did they still wear corsets under evening dresses?
    For this one, I shall refer you to another movie: Titanic

    And do you think the association with fainting has damaged womenkind's credibility as a result, with men assuming that any sudden emotion would leave a woman unconcious?
    Good question!

    Do women never wear corsets at all any more? Would girdles ever do the same?
    I don't know. But my great-aunt told me that corsets weren't all that bad, as long as they weren't too tight. She was a peasant girl, and they wore some kind of corsets too, and she said it was very useful when they were doing work in the fields for example, it supported the back very nicely.

  8. #8
    a white iris elfinchilde's Avatar
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    Men have 10 ribs, women have 12. the last two are just about under the diaphragm/lungs, so it explains the cutting off of breath.

    about whether women still wear them under evening dresses: depends on how vain the woman is.

    do they wear them anymore/are girdles the same: frankly, no. To give an idea of comparison: what's an average american current woman's waistline (you're american, right? )? The average victorian waistline was 18 inches, corset aided.

    http://www.staylace.com/textarea/history/acoc.htm if you should be interested.

    and this has GOT to be the most discreet thread i've been on.

    edit: if fainting has damaged womenkind's credibility: Frankly, no more or less than objectifying women as sex objects "meat", as modern culture has pressured women to become.
    Last edited by elfinchilde; 03-30-2008 at 07:20 AM. Reason: thanks wandering. :D
    You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;
    They called me the hyacinth girl.
    Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinth garden,
    Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could not
    Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither
    Living nor dead, and I knew nothing,
    Looking into the heart of light, the silence.

    --T.S Eliot, The Wasteland

  9. #9
    Highly Hollow Wandering's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elfinchilde View Post
    and ooh. Johnny Depp. *fans herself*
    Johnny Depp + Orlando Bloom = one fan in each hand

  10. #10
    a white iris elfinchilde's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wandering View Post
    Johnny Depp + Orlando Bloom = one fan in each hand
    Orlando Bloom, only as per below. What can i say, i'm prejudiced for my own species.



    edit: oh, and Mortie boyyyy....if you google Legolas in Images, you may perchance be interested in the 4th picture from the left. Or have you fainted from trying out the half breathing for 5 min? Suck in your stomach whilst experimenting with that. ya should get lightheaded in about a minute. That's how faints occur.
    You gave me hyacinths first a year ago;
    They called me the hyacinth girl.
    Yet when we came back, late, from the Hyacinth garden,
    Your arms full, and your hair wet, I could not
    Speak, and my eyes failed, I was neither
    Living nor dead, and I knew nothing,
    Looking into the heart of light, the silence.

    --T.S Eliot, The Wasteland

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