The Facial Hair of a Hundred Years Ago

By David Michael Newstead.

The facial hair of a hundred years ago was like a portrait gallery of old styles and the forgotten empires that created them. In Europe, this was epitomized by Kaiser Wilhelm II of Germany whose appearance would be ridiculous to modern audiences. From his elaborate uniforms and spiked helmet to his capes and long handlebar moustache, the man was practically a caricature of the past. In contrast, U.S. President Woodrow Wilson – clean-shaven and in a suit – might be seen as a harbinger of things to come. Of course, clean-shaven leaders in suits are now much more common than extravagant monarchs. And while facial hair may not be the best measure of historical changes, it’s sometimes hard to miss.

 

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The Movember Reader 2017

BBC: Dali’s moustache intact

Salvador Dalí’s moustache is intact in the “10 past 10” position, the surrealist painter’s foundation has said, a day after his body was exhumed.

“It was like a miracle,” said Narcis Bardalet, who was in charge of embalming Dalí’s body 28 years ago, adding that the hair was also intact.

The body was exhumed in the north-eastern Spanish city of Figueres to settle a paternity case.

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Jeremy Corbyn’s Beard

By David Michael Newstead.

If opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn manages to become Prime Minister, he’ll be Britain’s first leader with facial hair since Conservative Harold Macmillan in 1963 and the first with a full beard since Conservative Robert Gascoyne-Cecil in 1902. And although recent electoral success has earned him comparisons to fellow Labour leader Clement Attlee, Corbyn’s work is far from over. In the meantime, here’s a look at some of the best facial hair in British political history.

 

 

From ABC: Mustaches trending in Turkish ruling party

By Suzan Fraser.

The prime minister has one. So does the culture minister. Even the previously clean-shaven ministers of economy and foreign affairs recently began sporting theirs.

Neatly-trimmed mustaches, similar to that worn by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, have become increasingly popular among government ministers from his Islamic-rooted Justice and Development Party, or AKP, ahead of a crucial referendum Sunday on expanding the president’s powers.

Some analysts say that’s no fluke in a country where facial hair has a history of political significance, and where ministers’ loyalty to Erdogan is being closely scrutinized following a failed coup attempt last year.

“These days, when Turkey is fighting terror organizations — and in the aftermath of the coup — the mustaches provide a strong and stern image,” said Mesut Sen, professor of Turkish studies at Istanbul’s Marmara University.

Historically, men in Turkey have worn mustaches not only to assert their manhood but express their political leanings. Traditionally, nationalists wear their mustaches long and downward-pointing — like the crescent moon on the Turkish flag — while leftists tend to grow theirs bushy and Stalin-esque.

Erdogan wears a bristly and tidily-trimmed moustache that is popular among conservative and religious Turks. Some religious men also grow beards.

A year ago, more than half of the Cabinet members were clean-shaven. Now only three of Turkey’s 27 ministers — including the only woman — don’t have facial hair.

The trend appears to have begun with a Cabinet reshuffle last year, triggering speculation that ministers were trying to please the powerful president by growing mustaches similar to his. Senior AKP officials continued to grow mustaches, sometimes coupled with beards, after the failed coup attempt in July.

One government minister, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity, said some ministers grew facial hair because Erdogan urged them to. He declined to give further details.

The trend is not limited to the Cabinet. The chief of Turkey’s intelligence agency, who was the source of controversy over his alleged failure to warn Erdogan about the coup attempt, first grew a mustache and then a full beard. Erdogan’s closest bodyguard, who used to be clean shaven, now sports a mustache, too.

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Patrick Stewart as Vladimir Lenin

By David Michael Newstead.

Today marks the centennial of the February Revolution of 1917, which ended the rule of Czar Nicholas II. Here’s a clip of Vladimir Lenin learning of the downfall of the Czar as portrayed by actor Patrick Stewart.