As Halloween and October’s spooky festivities come to an end, a new occasion is growing. Literally. Beards across campus will start sprouting on November 1, only to run wild and free on young men’s faces for the span of 31 days.
Although both campus and nation-wide men will eagerly participate in No-Shave November, many may not know the exact history or origins of this practice.
Some credit the ancient, Grecian philosopher, Plato as developing this tradition. Although the month of November didn’t even exist in Ancient Greece, Plato was said to have expressed his notion that there should be a given period of time where men grow out their beards. Even the historically esteemed philosopher, Aristotle, seemed in agreement with Plato, as he stated in his own Nichomachean Ethics that “no man can be trusted if he is without a beard.” There, a principle was cultivated: young men should imitate their bearded leaders and had 30 days to grow a good beard.
Moving along in time, it is noted that Karl Marx believed one of the best ways to anger the bourgeoisie was to showcase a face full o’ fluff. His attempt at irritating the capitalists of society was said to have failed; however, the notion was still there.
As we make a major leap to the end of the 20th century, we see the development of an organization known as “Movember.” The goal of this organization was to raise awareness for men’s testicular and prostate cancers by not shaving for the entire month of November, or as the organization proclaims, “to have an everlasting impact on the face of men’s health.” The organization refers to their participants as “Mo Bros,” and even women who choose to get involved are referred to as “Mo Sistas.” A decade later, in 2011 there were more than 850,000 participants worldwide, and over $125 billion was raised toward the cause. For more information about the organization or to make a donation to its cause, visit www.us.movember.com.
So what better excuse to throw away the old razor you’ve been using two weeks too long? Raise awareness, donate to a good cause and let those facial hairs run wild.
Jade Wiselogle is a junior majoring in professional writing, with a specialization in public relations. She dreams of Valentino gowns, NY Fashion Week and working with Anna Wintour. Her editorial experience includes an internship at Seventeen Magazine and working as the Creative Director of MSU’s VIM Magazine.