Bralessness: Political Statements and my Gripe with Madonna

In the Spanish town of Valladolid, residents are calling on the mayor to resign. The mayor  made some stupid comments on radio regarding not trusting women. “”Imagine you get into a lift and there’s a girl trying to get it on with you. She gets in the lift with you, takes off her bra and skirt, and then runs out screaming that you’ve tried to assault her”. This has resulted in some 500 bras being tied together and placed across the entrance to city hall.


This is not the first time bras have been used to make a political statement. In the sixties, as a sign of emancipation women symbolically burned their bras. As a red-blooded heterosexual lad in my teens during the seventies, one of the more pleasant aspects of summer was the change in apparel adopted by many women. After a long Canadian winter in form-neutralizing coats and sweaters, ladies once again sported shape by wearing much lighter outfits. And perhaps the most important of these wardrobe changes was the appearance on the hot streets of Montreal of bra-less women. The first robin, the popping-up of buds on trees and the first glimpse of moving breasts were all harbingers of summer.


Yep … halter-tops, tube-tops and the old classic plain white T-shirt all donned without the encumbrance of a brassiere and allowing a natural movement! Not for me those Victorian corsets and bodices that pulverized a woman’s breasts together and jammed them northward until even she had to stand on a ladder to see over them. Let ‘em be natural I say. A little movement, or, frankly, a lot,  is much more natural to this blogger’s eye than the straight jacket approach. And I wasn’t alone, even WonderBra, maybe fearing their product was doomed, designed an almost non-bra which they advertised with the slogan “”Let it be Dici or Nothing”. According to the company’s website, “In 1974 Dici by WonderBra was introduced to meet the needs of young women looking for “less bra.” The Dici or Nothing TV commercial features this first seamless moulded garment.”

But then along came Madonna and, paradoxically given her penchant to the steamier side of entertaining over the years, it was all over. Ruined completely by her showing the world that it was okay to wear underwear as outerwear! All of a sudden women who wouldn’t wear tops that had to be worn sans bra because the straps would show, were wearing them and to hell with straps and clips showing. If Madonna can do it, so can I seemed to be the rallying call.


This, of course, defeated the entire purpose of the classic camisole, and tank-top. For we young fellows, the raison d’etre of these items was to, well, allow for some sway. Air conditioning only added to the look! But no, this new acceptance of lingerie as a front-line garment instead of being relegated to the second merely functional level, was to us akin to a woman buying a string bikini and wearing it over a sweat-suit. In essence, why bother.

Me DCMontreal – Deegan Charles Stubbs – is a Montreal writer born and raised who likes to establish balance and juxtapositions; a bit of this and a bit of that, a dash of Yin and a soupçon of Yang, some Peaks and an occasional Frean and maybe a bit of a sting in the tail! Please follow DC on Twitter @DCMontreal and on Facebook, and add him on Google+

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