This course begins with the premise that beauty is inherently political. In other words, a person’s—and more specifically, society’s—notions (Who is beautiful?) and practices of beauty (How do I become more beautiful?) are shaped by cultural, political and historical discourses that are both transnational and location-specific. Over the course of the semester, we will explore various aspects of beauty culture, broadly defined: plastic surgery, hair, beauty pageants, and fashion. By parsing out the relationship between beauty, power, gender, and capital, students will leave this class with an understanding of how everyday practices of looking and consuming are mediated through fields of power.