What's up, Europe? Gender, media and European integration. The story of a a young Dane exploring the continent.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Terror, freedom fighting and fashion

When you walk down the street why not do a bit of advertising for a guerrilla group? Recently a Danish company started selling t-shirts printed with the logos of guerrilla movements that are included in terror lists of both the EU and the US. If you buy a shirt you will even support the organisations with 35 DKK.

Is buying and wearing such a shirt a statement of fashion or politics? And what about the producers - are they terrorists?

Last year a second Danish t-shirt company was in the spotlight because of a provocative design: a shirt printed with the image Pope John Paul stated "only good guys die young".

It is a very thin line between being provocative and making doubtful political statements. To me, the John Paul t-shirt is sophisticated and humourous while the new guerrilla shirts overstep the line.

The website of the guerrilla t-shirt company, Fighters+Lovers, states:

Fighters+Lovers is greatly in debt to the stylish classic coolness of Palestinian fighter Leyla Khaled and the funky outrageous style of Colombian guerrilla commander Jacobo Arenas. Our Collection 2006 is inspired by the style and principles of these legendary fighters. Let them bring it on. You rock!

And further down:

Look great & stand up for freedom!

Without doubt this is storytelling by the book. The story of freedom fighters & fashion icons. The story of a t-shirt that will bring you liberation, individuality, power and respect.

But while enjoying the smooth rethorics of the webpage it is also important to keep the story about doubtful political methods, abductions and hostage taking in mind. In the world of today freedom movements are a grey zone. Political consumerism isn't about making statements - it's about really knowing what you're buying!

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