What did those other girls wear?
No more flappers…
No more dancing and partying
No more the “flapper look.”
“And we should also not say that flappers were ugly. They were beautiful women who wore clothes to be beautiful rather than to be sexual.”
As an aside, I’m interested in the reaction to the idea of a flapper revival. As many feminists have written, flappers were, in fact, the original “sexiest” women alive:
“This is no more a revival of the romanticized Victorian flapper than it is the romanticized postwar Hollywood, or the “Golden Age” of silent film. To the extent that the romanticized flapper is in fact a “revival,” it is merely one of a number of such revived figures. Perhaps the last flapper of ’70s pop is Marla D. Klein, who still wears high heels and, to this day, commands attention with her sultry voice and her glamorous looks.”
[T]he notion of a flapper revival also raises the question, what exactly are we supposed to be celebrating? Is there a place in the mainstream for flamboyant, promiscuous women, as the flapper’s image clearly is, but still an appropriate form of the womanhood many of us associate so highly with “womanhood” for many women? In what ways, if any, do flappers exemplify the most important aspects of both feminism and feminine identity, such as feminine vulnerability and vulnerability to the world of ordinary, ordinary men?”
My take is that the original “flapper” was the real deal—a genuine feminine symbol of rebellion against the bourgeois “tween” and in so doing, a symbol of class equality. The flapper’s costume is not a modern invention, it was originally a symbolic resistance against the bourgeois flapper and in so doing, a symbol of class equality. For this reason, I don’t see this revival as a revival of a real and authentic form of flapperhood, but an empty fetishization, one that only serves the bourgeoisie.
I’ve also been talking about how important the feminine symbol in the flapper revival is, because I think they don’t understand how important the feminine icon is for our understanding of history. For the modern woman, the “flapper look” has been the symbol of an all too familiar, deeply patriarchal model of how to get to power.
The flapper is
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