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Sexism in vintage culture

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So I recently wrote a set of posts on my vintage blog {pt.1 and pt. 2} about sexism in vintage culture. It started out discussing the phrase “I wish women still dressed like that” and how it has undertones of wanting to put women in a submissive place. 

I got some opposing comments, some people missed the point, and some were just flat out insane (yay internet). But within that were some people who added some richness to the discussion. Seeing as the community on here is very open to discussion about sexism and is often looking to expand their minds about the subject, I wanted to place some quotes here that could be food for thought, they were for me! 

"I’m firmly on the side of ‘if you can’t compliment me by putting down other women, I don’t want your compliment.’
Just because I wear skirts below the knee, doesn’t mean I’m more of a ‘lady’ than babes who rock leggings as pants, fake tan and crop tops.”

-Adele

With burlesque culture becoming mainstream, vintage has also become more sexualised over the last decade or so. Men seem to think that, if you’re dressed in a style that they associate with pin-ups etc., it means you’re sexually available to all people at all times.”

-Faith Rudd Trimmer

"…when men make comments like that to women, they essentially are saying that they see us as decoration, even if they don’t realize it.”

-azucenavintage

While I am a feminist, it isn’t a “feminist” notion to want to go about your day without the uninvited opinions of strangers. Anyone would find that intrusive, not just those of us who believe in gender equality.”

-Lora Conrad

"…while I understand people who think “I wish women still dressed like that” is a harmless compliment, it does imply that That Is The Way Women Should Look. It lumps all women into one category and shelves them away so they don’t need to be dealt with in their complexity. This Is Womanly, All Women Should Wear This.”

-Whitney

It’s even more annoying when this comment comes along with some idea of “modesty” or “dressing properly”, which to me is a concept that shouldn’t even exist, and is dangerously close to slut shaming.

And saying “they don’t mean it in a bad way!” so doesn’t recognize the problem and is completely beside the point.”

-Johanna Ost

The thing that stays with me most is that there seems to be this notion (by some – pro and against) that to be feminist we have to be against something/someone. For example, that to be feminist means to hate men (i.e. misandry) or being feminine and is a women only club.”

One final thing from me, which struck me as I read your original post and comments was how badly the compliment you were given reads if replaced with another word, e.g. “I wish Asians* still dressed like that”. *[insert any other lazy grouping here]. Doesn’t that sound awful!”

-The Craftytraveller 

 It’s unfortunate that we’ve all been raised in a climate of sexism and misogyny, men and women, to the point where some men think they’re entitled to say things like that and some women think it’s perfectly fine.”

-Mrs. Williams

 Just because the sexism you’ve personally experienced makes you feel like it’s working in your favor, that doesn’t mean you need to use your anecdotal evidence to tell other people they’re wrong.”

-Michelle Volansky

"I think the first problem that people seem to be missing is it is very rarely "I wish more people did xxx" it is almost always "I wish more women did xxxx".

-missfairchildscharmschool

"I think a key word we’re missing here is "privilege." Like it or not, dressing feminine when your gender is perceived of as feminine grants you social privilege (the same goes for so-called "masculine" men). Generally, we give privilege to people who dress within "traditional" gender identities; we tend to shame those who doesn’t adhere to clear identities."

-Lara

Some of the comments on my my last post about vintage culture and sexism were so unbelievable or just very misguided, so I wrote more on the subject. Many thanks for those of you who supported my original post, I do appreciate it! Feel free to join in here on on Vixen Vintage

I wrote a post about sexism in vintage culture on Vixen Vintage, you can read it here. 
{image source}

I wrote a post about sexism in vintage culture on Vixen Vintage, you can read it here

{image source}

Reminiscing over old favorite outfits on this rainy day. 
{If Poison Ivy and Selena Kyle raised a daughter}

Reminiscing over old favorite outfits on this rainy day. 

{If Poison Ivy and Selena Kyle raised a daughter}

My friend Lisa snapped this a few weeks ago in my living room. To the left you’ll see a teacup of water, because that’s the only way the cats will drink water. To the right is a box, also because cats. And in the middle are the best boots ever. Oh and I’m in there too. More pics here. 

My friend Lisa snapped this a few weeks ago in my living room. To the left you’ll see a teacup of water, because that’s the only way the cats will drink water. To the right is a box, also because cats. And in the middle are the best boots ever. Oh and I’m in there too. More pics here

Hanging out at Fort Vancouver with Lisa last week. Full post and more photos here