Friday, October 29, 2010

Who Made Halloween About Sex?

Rachel Durchslag, our executive director, is quoted in RedEye about the trend of increasingly “sexy” Halloween costumes, and I thought maybe we could chat about it over here too. Alysse, the RedEye reporter, interviewed Chicagoans about which type of costume was better, sexy or scary. We appreciate our perspective being included in the story—here’s a longer quote from Rachel on the subject:

“As our society is getting more and more hyper-sexualized, people are going over the top on Halloween to out-do the pace. It’s still really taboo to talk about sex in our culture, and yet we’re bombarded with sexual imagery.

I see this trend as our culture’s failure to create authentic ways to celebrate sexuality. Who gets to define what’s sexy and sexual? We’re letting costume companies make money off of defining our sexual desires.

Men, on their own, probably wouldn’t say that they fantasize about a woman in a skimpy firefighter outfit. And yet now that it’s accepted, women feel they need to live up to these standards.

We should think about the role we’re letting corporations play in shaping our identities. It’s frightening.”

What do you think? Is Halloween about sex because we want it to be, or because someone else tells us it should be? And, on a lighter note, what’s your costume going to be this year? Rachel was Waldo :)

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