Sunday, October 18, 2009

Calvin Klein "enhances" men's jeans

by Jordan Kisner

Calvin Klein's newest pair of jeans
for men comes with a little *ahem* enhancement built in. That's right, ladies and gentlemen, we're talking about a pair of jeans with padding to boost the bulge.

My first reaction? Laughter. And then I remembered the Wonder Bra. And Spanx. And LashBlast mascara and high heels and collagen and any number of ridiculous products designed to help women appear bustier, slimmer, fuller, taller, plumper, tanner, and tighter. Body by Calvin Klein Jeans are being marketed to men in the same way that the Wonder Bra is marketed to women: as a boost (good grief the puns) of confidence.

"They were a breakthrough! Such comfort, such support! And yes, my confidence was bigger! It looked bigger, at least."

There is a sociology thesis waiting to be written about the way this man's penis and his sense of confidence suddenly seem equivalent because of a pair of jeans, but I'd rather focus for the moment on the inauguration of modern men into the world of "enhancing apparel" that women have occupied (been victimized by?) for centuries. I can't say I'm all that happy they've arrived. While some people will make the claim that this is a positive development for gender equality, it seems more of a defeat than a victory to have men participating in a mentality that has done immeasurable harm to women. I wonder if feminists aren't now faced with double duty-- already absorbed with the effort to get American culture to value women's bodies unenhanced, has the time come to focus on men's bodies, too?


At October 18, 2009 at 2:28 PM , Anonymous The Spearhead said...

Countless writers have congratulated themselves and each other as they snarkily “deconstructed” manhood. The worst of them have slandered men outright. The most generous have attempted to forgive men for not being like women, and have offered corrective suggestions as to how men might better serve the social agendas of certain women. Unfortunately, by employing the vocabulary and style of the “social sciences,” ideologically skewed disinformation and propaganda has often been mistaken for objective analysis–even “truth.”

The majority of people writing about men have some sort of axe to grind. Many are simply nursing wounds of exclusion or rejection from their childhoods, and they adopt the language and postures of craftier folk. Some of the male feminist writers also fit that description, but some seem to be motivated, ironically, by a sense of chivalry–as if they are graciously opening doors so that women can thrive.

But the end of this sort of anti-male writing is clear: to render manhood meaningless and demoralize men to the extent that they can no longer function to their greatest potential.

At October 18, 2009 at 11:52 PM , Blogger Courtny said...

I'm just going to ignore the comment above, as I'm not sure what this has to do with the Calvin Klein jeans ad...

As for the jeans, I say why not? People will have to come to terms with the fact that their bodies will probably not look like a model's (male or female)--but if someone chooses to wear a padded bra or padded jeans, why not? It's their body and style.


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