Anti-Semitism in the Fashion Industry

Oct 21, 2008
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Yes to the above, somewhat.
I can't buy into the whole Chanel thing because of Coco. I don't own bags, cosmetics, fragrance or any clothing. I tried bags but I felt uncomfortable and self-conscious - they didn't feel right. I do wear Chanel boots and shoes though, specifically combat boots and work boots. I don't know why I'm OK with them.

And Hugo Boss. SS uniforms and all that ...

I don't talk about the subject though and I wouldn't try to shame others for adoring Chanel and wearing Hugo Boss. And obviously I'm not consistent because I wear Chanel shoes.
 

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Aug 31, 2008
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Bitty Monkey, thank you for starting the thread. I found this article and others interesting about the Wertheimer family’s relationship with Chanel. https://www.jpost.com/diaspora/anti...d-chanel-of-its-antisemitic-nazi-roots-581267. Am not sure I agree with the title, but it’s complex and fascinating. I was in the other thread (The Atlantic, style and racism) and being both filipino and jewish, I believe I get tangled up re racism and prejudice and whether a separate thread was warranted In the sense thta I enjoyed a wide variety of responses. I have mixed feelings about the connections between racism and antisemitism, and I have a lot to learn.

I also found that if you google fashion and antisemitism, you find many fashion companies have serious issues ranging from high end Galliano (racist and antisemitic rants) (Dior, Galliano, and then Maison Margiela); and, icons like Chanel to a mass production company like Zara. Years ago, Zara faced a 40 million usd anti semitism and anti-gay discrimination suit and had a history of clothing with yellow stars and, as late as 2007, even a bag with a swastika.

(I didn’t know some of this until I googled it. will I buy Galliano and Zara going forward. Probably not.
But, I used to buy chanel RTW and leather goods regularly, and I’m researching a possible verdura purchase which is inextricably linked to chanel. DH just purchased a Lange zeitwork watch, a German company (I don’t think it has anti Semitic issues) . But, i am probably guilty of drawing no bright line bc I rely on the lazy rationale, these issues are everywhere. . . Do I stop admiring Picasso bc he really sounds like he was a womanizer and a chauvinist and didnt seem to support Dora Maar enough in her own artistic endeavors. . . (Yes, I know that’s a separate, not systemic issue).

I think I’ve subconsciously tried to avoid the issue entirely when it comes to quality purchases and just try to buy stuff that won’t contribute too much waste or landfill. I’m more concerned about plastics in clothing than about anti-semitism. For most of my adult life as a consumer (three decades), I’ve bought and worn clothing that lasts. Before I was old enough to buy on my own dime, I had a host of family members (grandmother, mom, three aunts, godmothers, cousins etc etc) who gladly bought and shared stuff. We essentislly recycledjewelry, watches, bags, shoes, clothes. . . So, I try to buy sustainably and responsibly, and I since I love vintage style, I naturally gravitate towards both conventional retail and vintage/reseller.
 
Jan 15, 2011
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100% yes, anti-Semitic behavior affects my buying, in that I won't touch such brands any more than I would touch other brands that engage in either overtly offensive behavior or have a documented history of bias in corporate culture (say, Dolce & Gabbana).

I absolutely have a huge problem with Chanel and have done a fair amount of reading to try to understand the extent of her collaboration in both directions. Fortunately I don't really like the brand anyway.
I won't buy anything Galliano touches, and I used to really like Margiela.

To me, the Zara issue is more about the employees' claims of discrimination. Anyone who's spent time in India has seen the original version of the swastika painted everywhere (the symbol is thousands of years old), so for that symbol to show up in a fabric sourced from India isn't surprising and shows sloppiness rather than an overt statement IMO. But using anti-Semitic terms in the office and favoring certain "types" of employees? That one is deliberate.
 

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Aug 31, 2008
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QuelleFromage, I forgot about Dolce and Gabbana. I have older RTW but wouldn’t buy going forward.i also used to like Margiela.

i posted this Link on the Fashiom racism thread Bc of the clear reference to racism that I think is helpful in understanding these issues in a wider context. Of course, it isn’t on point re the fashion lens, but I did decide to repost here bc of the prejudice against jews and their categorization as nonwhite. It is a flippant example, but the lesson I got from it was very serious (when I saw the movie Blackklansman)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/clim...mail&utm_source=newsletter&wpisrc=nl_daily202
 
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880

30th anniversary cuff
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Aug 31, 2008
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chanel, balenciaga, christian Dior, Louis Vuitton, Hugo boss


im also pondering the extent of one‘s fashion purity. . . In the course of beginning to read about verdura, it doesn’t seem that he necessarily shared Chanel’s viewpoints. . . Some original versions of the cuff (Boivin) That inspired Verdura were ivory; verdura were enamel; early renditions for chanel were bakelite. . . then there is the racist tinged appropriation of Maltese crosses. . . .

re Cartier, Jean Toussaint (a prestigious jeweler known as La Panthers) responsible for the cat motif Cartier. . . does it follow that I read on to determine whether JT had antisemitic views. (I’ve gleaned these factiods from Patricia Corbett, Verdura, The Life and Work of A Master Jeweler.

while doing so, of course, it’s a very first world problem to even have this internal dialogue.
 
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With those who have problems with Nazi past of some fashion brands by that logic, you shouldn't drive German luxury cars either. During World War II, Porsche has involved in tanks production and advanced weapon systems. Mercedes - engines for aircraft, tanks, and submarines. Audi ( Group Auto Union) - military production of tanks, aircraft engines and used slave laborers from concentration camps.
 
Jan 15, 2011
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With those who have problems with Nazi past of some fashion brands by that logic, you shouldn't drive German luxury cars either. During World War II, Porsche has involved in tanks production and advanced weapon systems. Mercedes - engines for aircraft, tanks, and submarines. Audi ( Group Auto Union) - military production of tanks, aircraft engines and used slave laborers from concentration camps.
Would you take Bayer aspirin? Or any medicine made by that company?
 
Would you take Bayer aspirin? Or any medicine made by that company?
I don't have any problems with German cars and fashion brands with Nazi past. That was in the past. My post was about irony. Most wealthy people here drive luxury German cars.
By the way the Apollo program and landing to the Moon is a major merit of a group Nazi scientists imported in the USA after WWII. Wernher Von Braun developer of Saturn 5 rocket is a former SS member and was photographed with Adolf Hitler. It seems that the US government has no problem with that either.
 
Mar 10, 2007
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I don't have any problems with German cars and fashion brands with Nazi past. That was in the past. My post was about irony. Most wealthy people here drive luxury German cars.
By the way the Apollo program and landing to the Moon is a major merit of a group Nazi scientists imported in the USA after WWII. Wernher Von Braun developer of Saturn 5 rocket is a former SS member and was photographed with Adolf Hitler. It seems that the US government has no problem with that either.
Lots of people still have problems with Ford and with Operation Paperclip. There isn't much say the average person has over military decisions - which is what that was. The US government took in these scientists so that they wouldn't work for the Russians or anyone else.

I know many families who would never buy a Ford. Additionally, a good amount of Michiganders don't like the Ford family at all (at least that's what I've been told).