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Communist Chic: Will You Join The RED-volution

Let me start my dip into fashion with a disclaimer: there is nothing, NOTHING, chic about communism. I should know, having experienced the “sexiness” of Milosevic’s Yugoslavia.

With such “joy” did we inherit the wayward bureaucratic system of Josip Broz Tito where finding accountability was akin to finding a needle in a hay stack.

Wages? What were they again?

Truth? Another anomaly.

Though we did have a few little entities to keep us on our toes: oppression, censorship, dictatorship, war.

And that’s just the tip of the utopian iceberg.

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Image Credit: Abadia News

We weren’t the only ones. Other communist countries didn’t fare better. Mao Zedong’s “Great Leap Forward” leapt straight into a communalized nightmare. The South Americas still, to this day, deal with the remnants of the “new way.” Africa can’t rid themselves from the shackles of corrupt regimes. Why? Because communism lied. No victory was built on the destruction of the “evil and corrupt ruling classes.” All it did was replace the bourgeoisie with elite criminals.

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And, yes, I’ve heard all the arguments in defense of communism and you know what? All you “progressives” that want to come at me with your “application of communism was wrong” theories can go roll up your poster of Fidel Castro and go smoke it. I can bet my hat that most of you haven’t lived, tried to get employment or raise a family under communism. If you did, you’d realize that there was nothing wrong with the way the aforementioned regimes “applied” communism. Each and every dictatorship was a perfect application of the formula. Problem was, the formula, itself, was wrong. It was flawed. It lead to death and destruction, starvation and isolation from the rest of the world who were doing just fine without communism.

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Gorbachev was right: communism doesn’t work.

So, with all this in mind, why do we see communist chic flittering about in the bowels of fashion every so often? Wouldn’t it be an insult to those that suffered under the old hammer and sickle? Quite the opposite.


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In this twist, fashion takes the oppressive symbols of communism – the fists, the red star, even the hammer and sickle itself – and creates from it a type of kitsch. By doing so, we are able to mock the symbols that have ruined so many lives in so many countries. We remove them from reverence.

It’s kind of like drawing Hitler’s mustache on a pig’s butt.

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So, are you ready to join the red-volution?

Your weapons of war:

A ticket to Cuba

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Now that the half-a-century long sanctions on Cuba have somewhat eased, bet your bottom dollar that the country will become this year’s tourist hot spot.

Just look at what happened when good old Gorby declared Perestroika and Glasnost back in the nineties. Suddenly the iron curtain came a crumbling down and tourists came by the truckload to experience Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Guerilla gear

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Communist chic does have a certain militarized structure about it but you certainly shouldn’t hunt for options in official defense wardrobes. No, you’re heading to the jungles of Cambodia and seeking reference from the Kmer Rouge. Khakis are standard but the look has to have a “put together” as opposed to “polished” air about it.

Roses are red…

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And so are five-pointed stars, red squares and the blood of political opponents. It isn’t pinko unless you splash a bit of red here and there. Think red star badges, red pocket squares, red bandanas wrapped around bare arms, a red split skirt peeking out from under a Stalin-inspired dress coat….


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Image Credit: Vesper Magazine

Communism left many a state screwed so it’s only logical that your whole look has some sort of sex about it. A slant of the admiral hat, a little peekaboo of a leather bra under a sheer blouse, a mustache that makes your mouth look like a vagina gone sideways.

Above all else, still be cautious of the message that comes with communism. It may be all fun and games to wear a Che T-shirt or mock the red star but the realization that millions died under the reign of the iron curtain is sobering. In that vein, an air of caution is always a welcome fashion item.

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  1. This is such a fresh and interesting article!

  2. Great article, great writer and I really like the photos.

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