Julie Burchill says Kim Kardashian is a better role model than Marilyn Monroe

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British writer Julie Burchill has branded Kim Kardashian a better role model than Marilyn Monroe, saying it is better for women to be ‘tough not tender’ in order to succeed in a man’s world.

She compared the two women after Kardashian wore a famous crystal-studded gown, famously donned by Monroe as she sang Happy Birthday, Mr President to JFK in 1962, to last month’s Met Gala.

Discussing the pair in an article for The Spectator (in which she notes she dislikes the concept of role models), Burchill says both were ‘shamed for their nakedness’, but ‘the tough one toughed it out’, describing Kardashian.

The reality star’s leaked sex tape in 2007, led to a thriving career, thanks to Kardashian ‘owning’ it, rather than accepting the shaming, says the writer.

By contrast, Burchill says Monroe (who is said to have agreed that being an actress is ‘no better than being a hooker’, according to her maid Lena Pepitone), accepted being objectified by men, which ‘had such a disastrous effect on her, killing her at the age of 36’. 

Monroe was found dead at her home in Brentwood, California, after taking an overdose of barbituates.  

Kim Kardashian, pictured here at the Met Gala in May, wearing the dress Marilyn Monroe wore to sing Happy Birthday, Mr President to JFK in 1962, has been described as a better role model than the late actor

Marilyn Monroe, pictured here in 1950, in stills for the film All About Eve, reportedly agreed that being an actress is 'no better than being a hooker' according to her housekeeper Lena Pepitone

Marilyn Monroe, pictured here in 1950, in stills for the film All About Eve, reportedly agreed that being an actress is ‘no better than being a hooker’ according to her housekeeper Lena Pepitone

Julie Burchill has described Kim Kardashian as a better role model than Marilyn Monroe, citing the former's activism and business success, as well as her refusal to be 'shamed for her nakedness'

Julie Burchill has described Kim Kardashian as a better role model than Marilyn Monroe, citing the former’s activism and business success, as well as her refusal to be ‘shamed for her nakedness’

At this age, writes Burchill, Kardashian was ‘just getting started on her political activism, ranging from everything from publicising the Armenian genocide by Turkey and working for the release of non-violent drug offenders’.

She added: ‘The sneering query ‘But what does Kim Kardashian do?’ Is easily answered with “She raises four children, oversees a billion-dollar empire and gets under-privileged, non-violent people left rotting in jail out – what do you do?”.’ 

After sporting the sparkling dress, Kardashian faced a barrage of criticism, with some experts saying the piece shouldn’t have been taken out of storage at Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, to be worn.

Scott Fortner, a fashion historian and costume expert told the New York Post last month: ‘No one should have reworn this dress. It’s hard because [Kardashian] is one of the most influential people in the world.  

Kim Kardashian, pictured here during a recent episode of Keeping up with the Kardashians, 'refused to be shamed for her nakedness', according to Julie Burchill, who says the reality star has thrived because of it

Kim Kardashian, pictured here during a recent episode of Keeping up with the Kardashians, ‘refused to be shamed for her nakedness’, according to Julie Burchill, who says the reality star has thrived because of it

Monroe wore the custom Jean Louis gown to sing 'Happy Birthday' to then-President John F. Kennedy on May 19, 1962

Monroe wore the custom Jean Louis gown to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to then-President John F. Kennedy on May 19, 1962

Kardashian lost 16 pounds in three weeks to fit into the gown made for specifically for Monroe to wear to serenade the president

Kardashian lost 16 pounds in three weeks to fit into the gown made for specifically for Monroe to wear to serenade the president 

‘If it was up to me, I would not have allowed it simply because of the importance of the piece in American cultural history,’ he added. ‘But let me be clear, this is nothing to do with Kim Kardashian.’

Kardashian was the first person to don the gown since it was worn by Monroe in 1962. She admitted she lost 16 pounds in three weeks to fit into the dress, but she was still unable to zip it.

Speaking to Vogue, she said: ‘I’m extremely respectful to the dress and what it means to American history. I would never want to sit in it or eat in it or have any risk of any damage to it…’

She added: ‘It will forever be one of the greatest privileges of my life to be able to channel my inner Marilyn in this way, on such a special night.’

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