H&M have come under fire after a rape victim has accused them of glamourising sex attacks with their new Girl With The Dragon Tattoo clothing line.
For those not sure about the story line of the film a sexual attack plays a large part in the story based on the novels by Swedish writer Stieg Larsson. The book was originally titled Men Who Hate Women when it was released in Sweden and after Larsson witnessed the rape of a woman when he was younger he found it hard to forgive himself for not doing anything to help and for that reason many of his books were inspired by those events.
In an open letter Natalie Karneef said that she recognised the fashion line for giving men the message of ‘stay the f*** away’ and also put a ‘chic, consumerist finish’ on sexual violence. Further down the letter she also states, ‘What message is H&M sending to the world? “Look at the trendy rape survivor? Look how strong she is, that she can get through all that hell and still wear cool leather jackets?’
The clothes were designed by the films costume designer Trish Summerville and were inspired by the films lead character, Lisbeth who’s dark style is attributed in the books to her own experiences with sexual violence when she was younger.
Speaking in retaliation to the claims an H&M spokes person released a statement denying any intent to offend stating, ‘
though we think Lisbeth is a strong woman who stands up for her ideal, we are not trying to represent her specifically. Our goal is to rather offer a collection that we see in today’s trend picture that will appeal to many customers… We do not view this collection as provocative – it contains pieces that are staples in many people’s wardrobes: jeans, biker jackets and t-shirts. It’s all about how you wear them. We encourage our customers to find their own personal way to wear our products.’