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The “Meaning” of Baldness: Hair Loss in Works of Fiction

Hair loss is a very common condition. By the age of 50, half of all people will experience hair loss of some degree; with the majority of cases being due to Androgenic Alopecia, the proper name for male pattern baldness. As you’d expect from such a widespread symptom, hair loss has become a recurring theme in works of creative fiction, with thousands of characters being either partially or completely bald. This isn’t just a bit of idle detail, however; baldness has been consciously used by many creative types to convey certain things about the stories they write and the characters that populate them. So, what does baldness mean in fiction?

Heroes or Villains?

Many writers of fiction have used baldness to associate their character with a role of villainy – and with more than one hundred examples from film, TV, comics and literature, from Lord Voldemort and Lex Luthor to Mr Burns and Darth Maul, it does seem that men with hair loss are often cast as ‘the bad guy’. However, hair loss is just one of the many stereotypes associated with villians – for instance, have you ever noticed that almost all Disney villains have an English accent? There are also hundreds of bald characters in fiction who are good – and the bald villain stereotype certainly didn’t stop the very bald Patrick Stewart from being called “The Sexiest Man on TV” in 1992,” suggesting that baldness can not only be a positive symbol, it is also seen as attractive and desirable by many members of the public.

A Bald Leader

The aforementioned Patrick Stewart, especially in his role as Captain Picard in Star Trek, is a perfect example of the inversion of the negative symbolic usage of baldness in fiction. Therefore, it would seem that baldness can sometimes represent leadership or over-the-top manliness. Studies have indeed shown that bald men are often viewed as stronger and more masculine than their floppy haired counterparts, providing evidence for this rather more positive theory.

The Belgravia Centre—————————————————————————————————–

The Belgravia Centre is the leading hair loss clinic in the UK, based in Central London. We offer clinically proven treatments for hair loss, as part of comprehensive treatment programmes offered by our hair loss specialists. Our in-house pharmacy produces high-strength medications for hair loss that contain medically proven ingredients and are available at no other clinic worldwide. Treatment programmes are available by visiting the centre or for home-use, anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our hair loss success stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of hair regrowth so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 0800 077 6666 for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.

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