Topman, a term to be used loosely.

Posted: September 14, 2011 in Fashion, Sexism

Fashion giant Topman has decided to withdraw two t-shirts from their latest range after they received large amounts of comments from people furious over the items messages. The first t-shirt in question bore the text “Nice New Girlfriend: What Breed Is She?” whilst the second, a violent pillar-box red number, lists a series of excuses for what the reader is lead to assume is an act of domestic violence, including “You provoked me” and “I was drunk”. A campaign against the blatant sexism began on Twitter, where Tender, a London-based charity that works with young people to tackle the causes of domestic violence, picked it up. This campaign led to a Facebook group, which quickly picked up 332 members before, just a few hours after the backlash began, Topman announced their decision to stop selling the T-shirts.

Topman showing once more that sexism sells.

 

A spokeswoman said in a statement: “We have received some negative feedback regarding two of our printed T-shirts. While we would like to stress that these T-shirts were meant to be lighthearted and carried no serious meaning, we have made the decision to remove these (sic) from store and on-line as soon as possible. We would like to apologise to those who may have been offended by these designs.

The incident is the third in a month in which there has been controversy regarding t-shirt slogans produced by major names. First the Kate Moss, Slogan For Girls t-shirt which read, “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels”. Then the horrific JC Penny girls’ top that exclaimed the wearer was “Too pretty for homework” and that as such her brother had to do it. The implication that girls should make boys do all the serious stuff while they sit pretty and only ugly girls do work is a bit hard to swallow. If clothing lines give out the message that its okay for girls not to do homework, it’s going to have an inevitable reaction on how young people see themselves. The gender gap starts at school with fewer than 9% of girls opting to take GSCE Physics as it is seen as a ‘boys’ subject. So messages that girls should get their brothers to do maths (another so called ‘boy’ subject) aren’t helpful.

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