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American Eagle Gets a New Wardrobe

May 25, 2010

It seems to me that an article of clothing’s gender often comes more from how it’s worn that what sex it was intended for when it was designed and marketed.  Certain cultural fads disrupt this from time to time, but as fads have the tendency to change you can never count on them.  (Think men can’t wear lace?  A mere 200 years ago that was all the rage, and it was pretty accepted in the ’60s too.  Men can’t wear dresses?  Your grandfather probably wore one as a child, plus take a look outside of Western culture… …you get my drift.)

As a perfect example of how clothes get their gender from being worn, take these jeans and t-shirts at American Eagle Outfitters:Really size is the only thing that noticeably differentiates them…  and we all know that not every girl who shops at AE is a size 00!  So, have a same-sized couple both wear men’s ensemble in size 30-32 and small (or women’s in size 6 and large) and I would guess that no one would notice the difference.

(The guy would complain about the size of his “women’s” jeans pockets, though.)

So, anyhow,…  American Eagle Outfitters has a dress code that prohibits men from wearing women’s clothing, and women from wearing mens’ clothing.  …or rather, they had this rule until they were forced to drop that clause in their dress code this month!

Make the Road New York, a transgender charity organization, campaigned against AE’s dress code, which was a violation of New York’s Human Rights Law (businesses can’t discriminate based on gender identity.)

This was one of the first court rulings on dress codes using New York’s Human Rights Law – but there will probably be more coming shortly.  Most businesses at least have a line about the length a man’s hair can be…

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Kelly permalink
    July 15, 2010 11:43 am

    Sounds like someone had nothing to do….. since when do we care who the clothes are “made” for? We wear them anyways, even when they don’t really fit!!! I want mine to fit like a glove

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