10 September 2011

A Feminist/Fashion Rant

I firmly believe the women use fashion to impress other women, women who have their own style dress to please themselves, and women who follow what I will loosely term the WAG look dress to please men.  Nothing wrong in this, having a liberal take on the world, we should all be able to do and dress how we please.  However, I can't help feeling a tad disappointed in the WAG option, for me personally this is a sign of weakness, partially at the women who are wearing this, but mainly at the forces which make it such a desirable option.  I shall explain.

The primary image of Liverpool women in the media is the WAG, derided for being vacuous, false and designer obsessed gold diggers.  This is not my experience of the Scouse Sisterhood at all.  Yes there are women (and men) with those qualities in our fair city, but by and large Liverpool women are strong and outspoken and are generally up for a bit of a laugh.  Men are treated with an eye roll while we push up out sleeves and crack on with it.  Men?  they are just there for decoration.  I jest of course.  I am not anti men, I like men, I enjoy their company and there are many who I admire for their achievements.  I don't hold them individually to blame for the sexist society in which we still live but the patriarchal hegemony which has been in place for centuries and which thankfully is gradually being eroded.

I am pointing an accusing finger at the advertising companies and especially the lower brow media.  They are constantly offering up ideals of woman, be it size, looks or what they should be wearing which I feel is detrimental to women, they just won't let us be.  Even when I open Vogue, a magazine which is dear to my heart, I get annoyed at being bombarded with images, sex as the cliche goes, sells, and boy does it.  I have no objection to sex, quite like in fact but I do get frustrated that this is, by a long chalk, the main way in which things are sold.  Have we not yet moved away from this rather unsophisticated concept.  Why is the mainstream reluctant to harness the immense creativity at it's disposal and evolve.  Naive and vulnerable girls are why.  Is it moral to use this to sell more stuff?  Women especially younger women and girls buy into this hook line and sinker, it is so pervasive, feeding off the lack of confidence and self esteem which it produces in these women, that they will never match up.  As a consequence they may never feel the absolute joy that is dressing to please yourself only, to sticking two fingers up at what anyone thinks.  An extreme example of this is when I finally relented and allowed my very young daughter to have a Barbie doll, when she peeled off the clinging glittery pink dress, Barbie, god bless her plastic soul was wearing a gold thong, WTF?  Is this really the model I want her to use in order for her to grow up into a strong, independent creative being, a big nope.

I know that ranting about this in a blog is not going to change anything, but Ladies I implore you, please your own heart first when it comes to dressing at least.  Nothing is more attractive than a woman who knows her own mind and isn't scared of expressing it.  And my message to the media, open your eyes, there is a lot more to us Scouse women than your tiny minds can cope with.

The photo is from some dreadful footie site and saddens my little heart.

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