Uncensored Feminista

Changing the world one letter at a time.

American Apparels Dov Charney’s latest Ad.

with 3 comments

This text reads:

“Women initiate most domestic violence, yet out of a thousand cases of domestic violence, maybe one is involving a man.  And this has made a victim of culture out of women.”

Nice!  Stay Class Dov!

Of course, this man is no stranger to media attention for his sexist dribble, his sexual harassment, his discriminatory hiring of employees, and I’m not even bringing up his advertisements!

Here’s what Womanist Musings has to say about this:

Charney is using his position as a male of privilege to reinforce this destructive message.   There has been ample evidence of his hatred of women and the only question that remains is what we are going to do about it.   Obviously we cannot hope to change his mind, such misogynists  men rarely come to an understanding of the ways in which their behaviour is not only reductive but dangerous.  If he cannot be taught to respect women, he can still be brought to heel by a boycott of his stores.  What human decency he did not learn in socialization can be force fed through economic sanctions.

We often see something sexist, rail against it and then move on.  It is time as women that we begin to recognize that even though we earn so much less than men, we are still responsible for a great deal of the economy.  We need not spend our hard earned dollars to enrich a man that clearly hates women. Often times when we are confronted by sexism, negative reprisals forestall any form of active protest however in cases like this, it is well within our power to let this asshat know that there is a penalty for displaying such naked hatred of women. He should not profit from our labour and demean us with his MRA style misogynist lies.   So now that you know, spread the word and remind people that sometimes refusing to purchase something can also be a positive form of protest.

I have exactly two items from American Apparel, and those are these last two I will ever own.  I hope you will all join me, Womanist Musings, and Rage Against the Man-Chine in boycotting this company.  As a woman, buying from them is the equivalent of paying someone to spit on you.

(H/T Womanist Musings, Rage Against the Man-Chine)

Edit: Here are other places where this appears:


Now, there is some discussion regarding whether or not this ad is real or a fake, but I have to ask, does it really matter?  Dov Charney really did make this statement and the picture in and of itself is a real image, so someone took the image and put over it a statement he really said, does that negate the fact that he said it?

**Update 1/30/2009**

Bitch magazine received a letter from a Ryan Holiday from American Apparel regarding their blog post on this same issue.  It reads like this:

I thought I would email you this morning after seeing your post. First, it
might be weird but thank you for correcting that the ad isn’t real. Some
writers know that but are saying otherwise. American Apparel would never,
ever run an ad like that.
As for the quote, it’s not exactly genuine either. It’s sourced to an
interview that was done by the McGill Daily, a student newspaper in Canada.
Dov and the interviewer were discussing the book, Not Guilty: The Case in
Defense of Men. Not even the merits of the book…because there probably
aren’t any…but what the book said. The kid attributed that to Dov,
wrongly. The reason it wasn’t corrected is because it all happened 5 years
ago in another country.
I totally get that Dov Charney and American Apparel have a controversial
reputation. I also get that it’s your job to hold people responsible for
sexism and stupid quotes like the one above. But nobody at American Apparel
agrees with what that says. It’s just wrong. The assumption there is that a
ceo of a company that employes thousands of women went on record, on
purpose, to accuse them of causing the majority of domestic violence.
Jumping to conclusions is one thing, but this happens to be completely
Again, that’s where this all comes from and we wanted to explain. You
don’t have to print our side of the story but I thought you should know it.
Ryan Holiday
American Apparel

Now let me explain what I find interesting about this letter.  Firstly, who is the Mr. Holiday that he didn’t write his title to make it “official sounding”?  Who gave him the authority to write it?  Why was it written so matter of factly?  Why didn’t he out right debunk the quote, except to mention that it was a mis-quote?

Seems a bit fishy and uncaring if you ask me.  I’m still sticking by my position though: I’m not shopping there ever again.

Written by Lissette

January 28, 2009 at 1:31 pm

Posted in misogyny

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3 Responses

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  1. Where did you find this “ad”? I don’t see it anywhere other than on this website. I think it is a spoof. It doesn’t even make sense.


    January 28, 2009 at 3:18 pm

  2. […] about what they’re seeing.  My (and others’ — word up to Womanist Musings and  Uncensored Feminista for taking up the cause) suggestion that readers boycott American Apparel isn’t falling on […]

  3. Lissette,

    I should have sent you an email too but your post didn’t pop up into my Google Reader for some reason.

    To answer your questions: I didn’t debunk the quote because it pretty much stands for itself. It’s stupid, factually inaccurate and offensive. It debunks itself. I didn’t put my title because I didn’t feel like it was important. The purpose of my email wasn’t to try to force anyone to do anything – I was emailing someone who was genuinely upset about something and shouldn’t have had to feel that way. But if you need to know, I worked directly with Dov almost everyday and not once has he done anything that made me feel uncomfortable or unethical. And like I was saying before, if it happened there would be no hiding it. Nor would I want to work with him.

    You can email me if you’d like and I can explain whatever you need. Didn’t mean to seem uncaring.


    Ryan Holiday

    January 31, 2009 at 6:01 pm

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