...it's not dark yet, but it's gettin' there...

July 28, 2004

Why i'm Such A Huge Hugo Schwyzer Fan

This latest post, called "Waterparks. And the T-Shirt", referring to the abortion t-shirt, is one reason.

It was about 1997 or 1998 when I began to see the most remarkable slogans showing up on the fitted t-shirts of my female students: 'Porn Star'. 'Juicy.' 'Real American Bitch.' 'I Just Slept with your Boyfriend' (I've seen gay men where these too, but I see 'em more often on women; I've seen other verbs besides 'slept' as well.) 'Too Hot to Handle'. 'You Know you Wanna Touch.' . . . I associate all this with the banal and infuriating 'girl power' movement; largely a creation of advertisers, it sold young women a message of empowerment through shock and sexuality. . . .

What I disliked about these shirts was not so much their brazenness as their rank commercialism. Nothing genuinely radical, edgy, or dangerous is sold at Abercrombie and Fitch or Urban Outfitters . . . Newsflash, kiddies: The fact that it horrifies your parents doesn't make it any less a product of the very same corporate America in which your parents are investing. What these places sell is the cleverly marketed opportunity to outrage the older generation while simultaneously offering a superficially feminist message. The message is 'Only a bold, strong, brave young woman who doesn't care about conforming to stereotypes would wear a shirt like this. Thus if you wear this shirt, you bear witness to your fiery, indominatable, wild grrl soul.' Please. What you bear witness to, darlin', is nothing more than your own socially constructed insecurity, and any sensible person over 25 is abundantly aware of that.

Right on!

Posted by annika, Jul. 28, 2004 |
Rubric: On The Blogosphere


Wow, Annika, thanks! I'm blushing!

Posted by: Hugo on Jul. 28, 2004