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How to make a feminist Halloween costume...?

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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-01-09 03:54 AM
Original message
How to make a feminist Halloween costume...?
As I sat perusing the various links to the latest looks in Halloween costumes:


http://www.bing.com/shopping/search?q=sexy%20pirate&p1=...

^^(no--i did not search on "sexy pirate costumes." i clicked on the link from msn's main news page. (sigh))^^

http://www.partycity.com/category/costumes+%26+accessor...

Making the effort to choke down the urge to vomit, while simultaneously realizing how desperately i want to find the asshole who created most of these costumes and kick his ass...

I wondered....what is sincerely frightening to men? Really scary, without it turning into camp or a farce?
How could that be conveyed in a costume?

Also, what is the scariest era in history for women, in your opinion?
If one of these years I decide to dress up, I want to represent the period of history that was f**** up for women, and make a statement about that.

Anyway, consider these questions--use your imagination and create your ideal, feminist halloween costume. What would it consist of?

:hi:
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jmm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-01-09 11:16 PM
Response to Original message
1. Most of my man scaring ideas would be campy or potentially offensive.
Maybe dressing up as a writing scroll, like in the School House Rocks song about a bill or The Simpsons song about an amendment, with the ERA written on it? I think going dressed as a historical or famous woman who represents something you want to convey would work best. I'm a big Halloween fan. Maybe I'll go as Angela Davis this year? From a practical standpoint it never seemed quite right to me that most women's costumes expect us to run around half naked and freezing. Even if I wanted to wear something in public that would get me arrested for indecency any other time of year fall in New England is not the time to do it.

When I think of the scariest eras for women it sadly would be take less time to list progressive times.
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-02-09 05:47 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. the more i think about it...
...the more i feel that *this* may be one of the scariest times in history, for women--the era of "girls gone wild" and the porn star.

in my college years, i don't recall anyone considering stripping (or porn) as viable career options. i frequently read of young women, who were attending college. but dropped out so they could pursue a career as a "porn star." :shrug:

that's pretty damned scary to me. but dressing up as a porn star for halloween....well, how could anyone distinguish a porn star from any of the costumes i linked in the op? :eyes:

but i digress...

i like your ideas! especially the writing scroll/era idea--that would be cool! though, i wonder how many would "get it." angela davis could be a cool costume.

i really don't understand the whole,"public indecency" thing either. pretty much pisses me off. there was a time, a woman could be "dorothy from the wizard of oz" and people recalled their fondness for the film, judy garland etc. now dorothy is hawt, complete with platform 3", ruby red shoes, thigh high fishnet tights and a pinafore dress that doesn't cover the butt. :puke:

meh.

there's so many bleak periods in history for women. the victorian era and corsets come to mind. :scared: though many would think that was great, as corsets are "in" again. (sigh)
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ismnotwasm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-02-09 11:02 AM
Response to Original message
3. Unfortunately
The only thing I can think of that would be remotely frightening to men is a Lorena Bobbitt costume or perhaps a Vasectomy specialist (A white coat with "vasectomy specialist" in large red letters on the back) I wouldn't call them feminist though.

If I dressed up like a rape victim it would be sexualized. If I dressed up as a rape victim carrying the head of my rapist in a bowel-- as interesting and challenging as that would be, (halloween used to be my favorite holiday, and I has a lot of fun with costume design)rage and feminism are always consigned to ball buster, bitch or bulldike. One of the things anti-feminists try to do, is take away women's very biological gender.

If I dressed up like a beaten women, few would recognize it or understand why if they did

If I dressed like a famous historical feminist figure, no one would know who she was.

The goddess Kali--my personal favorite would be fun--but not necessarily feminist, could be though, if done right.

It amazes me how many women use halloween to dress as provocatively as possible. Like they need a special day and special permission. There is something profoundly sad about that. Just another sign that our sexuality is a commodity and one we don't own, I don't give a shit how many 'empowered' strippers there are or how many soft porn HBO shows depicting happy hookers.

The bottom line is that a woman with a truly empowered and powerful sexuality is not gonna sell it. And I don't want to hear about any dominatrix. IBTP has it right on that one, just another male fantasy. Still, I bet dominatrix costumes fly off the shelf, because of the perception of sexual power. Also sad.
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-03-09 09:43 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. it's so sad...
Edited on Sat Oct-03-09 09:48 PM by bliss_eternal
..that each respondent to this thread is (or was) fond of halloween and enjoyed the whole thing, only to see so much of it destroyed w/these insane "outfits." i refuse to call them costumes.

lorena bobbitt would be scary to many guys. lol (reading that made me laugh).

as did your comments about IBTP and prodomme discussions. those always crack me up. :rofl:

very cool post, thank you for sharing! :hi:

i've got to figure out something to wear, while giving out candy.
very frustrated by what's available commercially. :eyes: the presumption that all women want to have their ass, arms, boobs, etc. out and on full display...(sigh).


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comtec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-12-09 05:37 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. Nun, a Nun with a meter stick
That will scare about anyone (esp those who went through catholic school, of which I am thankful/sadly not one of)

I suppose I'm just a dumb man, but why is it so wrong for a woman to want to dress up in a way that is pretty much unacceptable in general circles one night a year?

but I admit most of those ''costumes'' look like something in a catalog my wife and I get every few months LOL.

What is wrong with women in authority being attractive? and why does a costume have to be bone-chillingly-scary to men? isnt' that misandry all over again, and kind of missing the entire equality idea?

As far as a vasectomy doctor, I find that more appealing than disturbing(after kid 1, I'm taking myself out of the gene pool) .... unless you have garden sheers strapped to your back labeled "vasectomy tools" ;)

And FWIW, i've never bought a costume complete since I was a kid (and technically mom bought those). Since then i've always made my own. My sewing skills are capable enough, and I find it much more satisfying when my costume is complimented knowing I did it myself.

The last Halloween I participated in was 3 years ago. It my wife's first ever (she's dutch) and she dressed up as a good witch, with a plushy kitty wand we picked up for 99c, a hat (same), and a cape and dress she picked up recently. LOL I forget what I was, only that she was having a blast walking around trick-or-treating for the first time ever.

The point is to have fun. Be comfortable with whatever you like.
Halloween is meant to give respect, it is Sam Hein, a pegan god - and I honestly forget the rest from my Wiccan days *blush*.

It is not meant to be all oogy boogy - that's a christian church invention - but a night of respect for the dead, etc.

The most important thing about all hallow's eve, is to be comfortable.
enjoy.

I went one year as a tax collector!

hee hee talk about scary, that goes across all gender and status lines :)

Have a safe and happy Halloween!
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ismnotwasm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-13-09 01:23 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. Pre Columbine
Edited on Tue Oct-13-09 01:26 PM by ismnotwasm
My son went out in a black trench coat (mine, back in the day) with the words "Die Yuppie Scum" painted in white on the back. He was oh, maybe 12 or 13 I guess. In a well, yuppie, neighborhood.

Since you seem like a nice enough guy, rather than go on and on, I'm gonna direct you to this blog. He's a feminist friendly blogger who usually 'gets' it. Plus he's funny as hell and right on on a variety of topics. Dig around a bit, you may enjoy it.
http://physioprof.wordpress.com/
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comtec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-14-09 01:07 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Thank you
^_^

That does sound like an amusing costume.
It's too bad people wig out after these (semi) isolated events, and never consider the causes behind them.
I really felt for those two boys.
I completely understood the motivating reason behind it.
and it's sad that no one got it.
The bullying isnt even the real problem, yes its a major problem but not the root cause.
it's parents telling their kids its OK to treat kids like that. (that it's OK for boys to be "better" than girls in anything)

I think the "cure" to all kinds of 'phobia and mis(insert gender here) is acceptance and a desire to NOT try to be superior of anyone or thing.

I'll be sure to check out his blog :)
thank you for the link.
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-20-09 12:56 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. Had anyone bothered to read Comrade Physioprof....
Edited on Tue Oct-20-09 01:23 AM by bliss_eternal
...as you so kindly (and patiently) recommended, they may have seen how many of the "doodly dood rules" they had broken, with their insistence on posting here, while ignoring every woman's comments in favor of his own, suprerior "doodly" opinion.:

http://scienceblogs.com/isisthescientist/2009/05/comrad...

Let's see, in this thread #3, #7 and #10? ;)

In my other thread....#1 definitely! :spray:
....and then some (almost too many infractions to count). :rofl:

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ThomCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-29-09 01:31 AM
Response to Reply #9
10. Oops.
I have sometimes been the first response on a thread. Sorry. I didn't realize that was breaking a rule. :(

Nice set rules. I think I've seen more comprehensive things like this posted before on other feminist sites. Would it be useful to compile something like this and post is as a sticky?

With the new way that forums are grouped, more men might be finding this forum and wondering in. Instead of reinventing the same arguments every time one of us comes in here and does something clueless or rude a list might save a lot of hassles.
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-30-09 01:55 AM
Response to Reply #10
13. I think most would agree....
Edited on Fri Oct-30-09 02:13 AM by bliss_eternal
...of all the dudes that have wandered in here over the years, you are always respectful, kind and "appropriate." AND you've defended women's rights, feminism, people of color, glbt, disabled, etc. in the main forums.

I think if you review the comments of that member (in this thread and a couple of others)you'll understand why I resorted to responding to him in such a way.

Given his locked thread in this forum, some variation of "why do feminists hate men" :eyes: and making use of his oh so special term, "hisogyny":

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...

....I didn't feel inclined to buy whatever he was selling.

I certainly didn't appreciate his demand that we couldn't post about an incident regarding an ir couple because "that wasn't feminism" to him. :eyes: :banghead:

(fyi--so my comment was an attempt to call attention to one of the many ways, that member f***** up (per Comrade Physioprof's list). imo--the member made it clear that they were here to be dictatorial, condescending, dismissive and rude toward women (in OUR forum...wtf!?). To be honest, I couldn't care less if a male poster responds first here, particularly when I know the the male to be "pro-woman" everywhere else on this site. :hug:)
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bliss_eternal Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-18-09 09:27 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. IF...
Edited on Sun Oct-18-09 09:37 PM by bliss_eternal
...you'd taken some time to acquaint yourself with this forum, (prior to sharing your ignorance with us) you'd know that my post was more tongue in cheek than anything else. It was my way to start a discusion about the overtly sexual nature of women's Halloween costumes, while trying to have some fun with the subject matter.

IF you'd taken the time to read our mission statement, you'd know it's not ok that you felt the need to tell me to "relax and have a good time." While also stating that the costumes I dare to find offensive are "all in good fun." :eyes: :puke:

It's called being dismissive, dude.

Bottom line, buy a clue and get that no one is interested in that crap here (again--mission statement).
Your arrogant, condescending male bullshit of "lighten up ladies" is NOT welcome here. AT. Fucking. ALL. Get the fuck over yourself.

From where I sit, you can't seem to be bothered to show long time members of this forum, any respect whatsoever. That says to me, you need to go....like yesterday.

No one is interested in tolerating this kind of crap from you, least of all--me. So, show yourself the door. :hi:
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ThomCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-29-09 01:59 AM
Response to Original message
11. I have been having a very difficult time with halloween.
A feminist friendly compilation of costume ideas and examples would be a really great resource. I think a lot of people would get a lot of use from it, and it would be wonderful to counter this sameness we see in most commercially available costumes.

My dear friend/roommate Jenna is a large woman. There are absolutely no costumes out there for someone her size. Every costume assumes that you are under a certain size, and usually willing to show off skin.

The few "plus size" costumes we found fell into two categories, Witch's gown, or Ghostly/zombie gown. Not very creative. Not a big selection. Not a lot of room for creative expression.

I am in a wheelchair. There are very few costumes appropriate for people using wheelchairs, or walking with supports. Costumes are designed with the assumption that you will be standing while wearing them. Many of them are uncomfortable to sit in, and some are impossible to sit in. Many of them have parts that dangle or stick out or get caught in wheels and otherwise become unsafe for someone in a wheelchair.

What about people who combine the two issues? Do women with disabilities not get to dress up for Halloween?

We began searching theater shops, and costume websites in early summer because we knew is would be a long search. Now all the Halloween shops have opened up for the month. Here in NYC there are a lot of them. Still no luck.

Fortunately, Jenna sews. I used to hand sew all my Halloween costumes when my hands worked. I was better sewing by hand than using a machine. She is very good with a sewing machine. So she is making our costumes.

It is only because she can make our costumes that we have any. How many people have that luxury?

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ismnotwasm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-29-09 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #11
12. Halloween used to be my favorite Holiday
Even when I was younger and far more interested in being 'sexy' I'd make my costumes just a little bit different, A floor length black taffeta skirt for my witch costume, a toga like goddess costume with very little make up and a glided tiara, I made fairy wings with lovely fabric and wire coat hangers.

I agree completely about the lack of costumes for people with disabilities or people, especially women, of unconventional size, and although I'm quite artistic, I don't sew and I admire no end those who do.

It seems to me, In a wheelchair you can play it up or play it down. A biker, dressing up the wheelchair and yourself. that dude in a box from Star Trek, the one where Captain Kirk is on trial.

A large women has every right to express a vibrant and healthy sexuality, and it seems to me she doesn't have to do it with those horrid standard costumes, which are neither. (I get pissed every time I see that goddamn 'Naughty Nurse') I'm always partial to goddesses, I've always wanted to make a Kali ma costume.

Whatcha gonna be this Halloween?
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ThomCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Nov-01-09 01:00 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. I was a Satyr/Faun this year.
Pants made of furry fabric that were bulky around the hips and tapered around the ankles, so I looked a bit like I had goat's legs. Pointy elf ears worked well for goats ears. Devil horns worked for goat horns.

I didn't do the natural satyr/faun, not wearing anything above the waist. While I could possibly still pull that off, I think I'm too old for it, and I'm too sensitive to being in pain from chills. So I was one of those modern Satyrs that wear clothing. :P

Jenna was going to be a lady Phantom of the Opera. She loves Broadway, and there is no reason the Phantom can't be a woman. But the mask broke at the last minute, so she changed to a witch. It was what she could build at the last minute. But she was a very elegant witch.

She wore a fairly modest black, mid-length dress with a deep blue moon-and-stars bodice over it. She wore a beautiful black wool robe we got at a Renaissance Faire this year. And she wore a witch's hat with silver and gray flowers on it. She used a black silk rose as a wand.
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