According to Ray Davies’ slyly acerbic lyrics to the Kinks 1966 hit Dedicated Follower of Fashion, “They seek him here, they seek him there”. However, it seems that the modish fashions that Davies assiduously cataloged in the song were not sought or welcomed by the young women of Newcastle. Or, at the very least, the type of young women whose views were aired by The Newcastle Herald. Under the headline “Way-out fashions slated” on June 11 1968 The Herald published the views of five young women on the new fashion trends for men. With the exception of one lone dissenting voice, the women were resoundingly negative in their appraisal of the increasingly “feminine” appearance of the fashionable male. Vacillating between confusion and hostility the interviewees attempt to articulate their opposition to such fashions and the threat they pose to their essentialist notions of sexuality and difference. As one woman fervently claims: “It is the difference in taste and logic that makes the sexes interesting and appealing to each other. Why spoil it?”
To sample the views of ’68 click on the images above.