“We don’t consider sneakers to be feminine. Therein lies the essential difference,” Semmelhack explains. “Sneaker collecting, done by many men, is [described] in the tradition of other male collecting, like baseball cards and fine wines. It’s about having every single one in every single model. Female buying is 'emotional;' male buying is posited as rational. But emotion is just as wrapped up in sneakers.”
Thus, "sneaker culture" is sexist. Semmelhack's exhibit purports to examine the "unspoken sexism" of "sneaker culture."
|Is this shoe sexist?|
Casual Friday then forced men to wear sneakers: "For many men, it was an unsettling transition," Semmelhack believes. "Having been told not to wear their work-day uniform of a business suit, they suddenly were asked to find a new way of dressing that involved bringing aspects of their weekend selves — their downtime selves — into the office."
Semmelhack concludes that "sneakers helped men step into the fashion system on their own terms."