1973: Early Seventies ‘Oil Shock’ Hemlines
January 17, 2019
The length of clothing covering a modern Western woman’s legs acts as an economic barometer. As hemlines rise and fall, so does the perceived economic condition of the country according to women. For example, short skirts appear at times of high national production and long skirts during periods of austerity and recession. Ref. Desmond Morris.
Thus, we can date this image to the early 1970s time of recession. Probably 1973, as a commenter has suggested, which would match up well with the 1972 Oil Shock. In general, as my old sociology professor suggested, we do often have to add a 3 or 4 year lag to old (pre-net) NZ for being a cultural copy-cat. We’re a cultural colony, we don’t initiate but we follow where USA and UK lead us.
Note- Last summer, 2018, young women and girls had record low hemlines. Daughters are out in public with shorts so short their lower bottom cheeks are actually showing! I’d wonder what a scandal it would be to their parents but to my shock I see that these girls are often WITH their parents like this in public! Oh the mores, oh the times! How much higher can they go?
This summer, 2019, things have not become worse though. Denim shorts are back again but they’re not frayed and they’re a little longer. So perhaps it’s not Armageddon just yet after all. Phew!
Ref also, Early Thirties ‘The Slump’ Hemlines
I modified Morris’s observation to ‘perceived economic conditions’ because I don’t accept that we really are in a economic up-cycle. It’s inflationary, it’s deficit-financed, wealth is being redistributed to pay for these bare bums to a peak extreme that is about to come crashing down hard. By contrast, the women below sport austerity fashion.