This 100 Years Of Irish Beauty Video Does Not Hold Back

It's St. Patrick's Day, which means clichés will be popping up like clovers all over the internet (see? it's literally impossible to avoid). But Cut Video is commemorating the holiday in a less predictable — and more provocative — fashion. The site's newest video attempts to detail 100 years of beauty in both the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, all in a two-minute time frame. While some of the looks lean towards accuracy (nude skin and serviceable updos in the early 20th century), others appear to glamorize a violent and still-painful period in the divided nation's recent history. (Case in point: a segment featuring an attractive IRA fighter, wielding an automatic rifle.)

We'll admit, we were initially uncomfortable with the image of a model swinging around a weapon, especially in the name of beauty. However, the decision to include the look was no knee-jerk reaction. Cut Video released a "Behind The Looks" segment, explaining their rationale.

"We used a look inspired by women who were fighting in the Irish Republican Army," writer and journalist Josh Potter says in the video. "Whether or not we were glorifying violence or terrorism by including the IRA look was a question I asked of myself and I think we asked of each other," he says. "I wanted to use the look simply because it reflected the violence of the time period. I think we would have done a disservice to the project by leaving that look out, because that would have whitewashed a large part of North Ireland's history."

So, what are we to think regarding Cut Video's condensed celebration of Irish beauty? Should we take issue with its generalizations and the sexy posturing of women with rifles? Or, is it a good thing that we're being forced (or shocked) into remembering that Irish history (like all histories) has more depth, darkness, and complexity than that mug of stout we'll be drinking today?

You make the call.

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