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Marilyn Monroe is still a major pop culture icon 60 years after her death

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Born Norma Jean Mortenson, Marilyn Monroe was a sex symbol of the 1950s and 1960s and one of the key figures of the era that left a lasting impact on pop culture.

Sixty years after her death on August 4, 1962, the model, actress and singer is still remembered as a kind woman with a generous spirit.

Marilyn Remembered fan club president Greg Schreiner said, “People who really knew her never even thought of her as a ‘blonde bombshell’.

“I remember talking to her stand-in, Evelyn Moriarty, and she said something about what Marilyn is wearing. It was so lovely.”

“And the next morning the goods were packed in front of her door, so that’s how generous Marilyn was,” Shriner said.

Misconceptions about her personality and image

Her acting career was successful, with Monroe appearing in about 30 films, including Some Like It Hot and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.

However, it was her personal life that caught the attention of the press. Monroe has been married three times, most famously to baseball star Joe DiMaggio and screenwriter Arthur Miller.

While the public was used to seeing her onscreen as a “sexy blonde,” the real Marilyn was very different.

“I think the public can be misunderstood,” Schreiner said. “Indeed, the studio promoted the image of her as being a stupid blonde. She wasn’t stupid. She was incredibly witty and smart and really a very smart girl.” .”

“When she read, she read philosophers and very detailed books. She didn’t read cheap novels. She was always keen to educate herself.” ”

So what was it about the star that caught the public’s attention? Was it her looks? her acting skills? What about her troubled personal life?

Some experts believe it’s because she represents a moment in history when there was a massive cultural shift.

Associate Professor Will Scheibel of Syracuse University says that for many, Monroe epitomizes the 1950s in general.

“Her image, the fact that her star was rising, at the same time that this kind of transformation took place in film and popular culture, enabled or encouraged a more sexually liberating attitude.

“You see this in popular literature and in cinema. Monroe is sort of the node of many changes in the 1950s,” explained Scheibel, who teaches film and screen studies.

Sixty years after her death, Monroe is still a global icon, much imitated by modern celebrities.

But Scheibel said her perception of what kind of woman she is has changed.

“When we talk about Marilyn Monroe, we’re talking about a sex symbol and another side that was more hidden in the 1950s,” he said.

“I think there was an assumption that her value was solely in her sex appeal, that she had no talent, that she was really stupid. And now people understand that it was a performance.” I think.”

Monroe died of a drug overdose at the age of 36, leaving fans wondering what she would have accomplished had she lived. Experts say her cause of death was suicide, a fact many fans dispute, arguing that the overdose was likely accidental.

The Marilyn Remembered fan club will hold a memorial service on Friday to mark the anniversary of Monroe’s death.