This article was published on March 25th, 2015
Most people see stilettos or heels on men as something to giggle about or even marvel over, however, most don’t know that men were the first to wear heels. Heels on men were worn for over 130 years during the turn of the 17th century. Heels on men were used as a symbol of prestige and power to look taller. The Bata Shoe Museum will be hosting an exhibit in 2015 called “standing tall” and showcases over four centuries of men’s shoe fashion.
Did misogyny kill the high heel shoe for men? Men wore high heels for prestige and power, women in turn started wearing heels to look more “masculine” and men stopped wearing them so they didn’t look “feminine”.
According to the definition, Misogyny is the dislike of, contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against women. Some have argued that the fact men didn’t want to be associated with emulating any female attributes; misogyny caused men to stop wearing heels.
How far have we come; what about comments like “he throws like a girl”, or “not bad for a girl”. Does our “modern” society today associate wearing heels with gender dysphoria, cross dressers or drag queens? What about thinking about men in heels as standing along side women to represent our advancement in equality. Campaigns like the HeforShe are pushing us to think differently about images and social construction around gender. Next time you see a man in heals you may want to give them a thumbs up and thank them for helping push the societal boundaries on gender stereotypes.