Marilyn Monroe: THE START

Essay by tashanipCollege, Undergraduate April 2004

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Marilyn Monroe's status as a sex symbol and popular icon has set a standard for American beauty that no one else can set.

Throughout the years of Monroe's childhood, she encountered many hardships unsuitable for a girl. She was born with the name of Norma Jean Mortensen and into a family not quiet secure, forcing her to have spent little time with her birth mother, Gladys Monroe Baker Mortensen, and most of her early years in foster homes. There were many different times when she would contemplate whether or not she was a mistake, and doubted her own mothers love for her. This "painful, naked and embarrassing need for love," (#6) mislead her into marriage at age 16, to James Dougherty in 1942, and within four years had a divorce.

Later in the years of her adolescence she found true love, both in her marriage and her career.

Monroe followed her new husband when he was sent out to sea duty for his job at the aircraft factory. Her stunning looks caught the attention of a man who was photographing the army and Monroe soon became his number one priority. This opened the doors for her career and Monroe was soon taking modeling classes. Word got around and then next thing you know Marilyn Monroe's face was on the cover of magazines everywhere. This excited Monroe and she gave up her husband to move to Hollywood to pursue her dream of being famous, "i knew I belonged to the public and to the world" (#3) .

After moving to Hollywood Norma Jean Mortenson soon became Marilyn Monroe. In 1946 Monroe got a contract with 20th century fox and is from then on known as the blonde bombshell. Monroe's, "first films relegated her display of such talents to modeling...