Stereotypical costumes? Booooooo!

26 10 2013

Our friends at MissRepresentation (now The Representation Project) recently spotlighted the “increasingly gendered nature of Halloween costumes” and challenged us to be more creative with our efforts this year. And, they report, the response has been inspiring…

“Halloween is thought to have originated as a night to remember those who had passed or as a ritual to appease the “spirit” world. Today, most of us love the night because it gives us a chance to dress up and momentarily pretend to be something or someone else. There’s also the joy of collectively facing the “scariest” elements of our world.

Yet, over the years – as a result of widespread commercialization – Halloween has also devolved into a parade of our society’s worst impulses. From the hypersexualization of women and girls to encouraging violence in boys – not to mention racially and culturally insensitive costumes of all kinds – we often spend this night perpetuating the most harmful aspects of culture, rather than imagining something better.”

(takebackhalloween.org)

(takebackhalloween.org)

Instead of opting for the typical princess and super hero costumes for our girls and boys this year, we can stop perpetuating unfair stereotypes and help youngsters feel comfortable wearing costumes that go beyond the traditional.  At the very least, we can help offer them options that stretch beyond the predictible.

Check out the “Take Back Halloween” campaign, a website featuring creative costume ideas (for adults too) that are thoughtful and, in many cases, simple to assemble with commonly found items: www.takebackhalloween.org

By joining the move to “take back” Halloween, we can replace hurtful stereotypes with a celebration that is a fun and inclusive holiday for all.

Happy haunting!

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