One thing that really struck me from reading the article was the part that mentioned how “girls had to be careful to not get in trouble and excessive loitering on the street corners might be taken as a sexual invitation to the boys.” THIS right here is something, I feel, is definitely a worry for girls today, whether they are in any kind of subculture (especially rock, punk, dark, etc.) It’s like we can’t be taken as seriously as the teddy-boys that roam around at night. We have to watch how we are dressed, make sure we fit the feminine “standards” of society, and continue to act like “ladies” rather than rebel or act somewhat human at all. If boys can be “badasses”, why can’t we?
Being different, wearing whatever we like, or hanging around the streets at nights with our friends shouldn’t be presumed as “promiscuous”. Especially back then in the 50s, guys were able to be a lot more flexible in fashion, attire, behaviors, and interests, but girls needed to hush up, stay put, and follow instructions. And it’s not fair when (as said in the article) that the industry was targeting BOTH genders and only one is allowed to get away with “experimenting with clothes and hair”.
There has been a major improvement of girls and their sexuality, choosing their own style, and doing whatever they like… but sometimes girls in subcultures can be seen as sexual objects for the boys in their groups, rather than a person who shares the same interest (for example: nerdy girls with comics or video game girls not being taken as seriously as they should).
It was even pointed out in the motorcycle girl subculture: in reality, these sexed up girls didn’t even know how to drive, and to be in a gang you had to be a sexy girlfriend of the guy who was already in the group. It wasn’t truly about breaking out and becoming a “threat” towards acting in a louder, more dominant matter – it eventually turned these cool chicks into walking fantasies.
It’s one thing to be okay and show off your sexuality, but it’s another to have it be taken advantage of and only be noticed for how “hot” you look. Girls are constantly told that they are suppose to be “glamorous” and copy the image of what the media/shopping industry wants to sell to the public – which isn’t okay. If you enjoy being all dolled up and following the latest fashion – cool! By all means, you do you! Do whatever your heart desires! You have that freedom! But when it gets pushed on the girls who don’t want to be a part of this, then it has to stop.
That’s why I do believe being a girl in a subculture can be tougher than it is to be a man in a subculture because there are so many embedded rules against what we can and can not do. We are not here for show – we are here to express ourselves as individuals.
It’s just so funny how we, as a gender, have been taught so many things like how to dress, how to flirt, how to catch a man, how to act, and so on. Just do whatever you want and partake in whatever you think is awesome.