VCU MASC 201 Creative Levi's Project

Bootleg-cut (29 of 54)

The Prohibition of Levi’s

Weekly Directive:  PROGRESSIVE

The Progressive Era in the United States was a period of social activism and political reform that flourished from the 1890s to the 1920s. Prohibition was one of the most notable products of the Progressive Movement, making it illegal  to manufacture, transport, import, export, sell, or consume alcohol and alcoholic beverages.  It was unsuccessful in North America and elsewhere, as bootlegging  became widespread, and organized crime took control of the distribution of alcohol. Prohibition came to an end in the late 1920s or early 1930s in most of North America and Europe, although a few locations continued prohibition for many more years.  What if the Progressive Movement had set their sights on regulating Levi’s?  I mean, it could happen.   Let’s not forget, the government  “prohibited” the sale of Levi’s to non-defense workers 10-years later during WWII, and even went as far as banning jeans at school and the work place.  Levi’s wearers during those times were just a persistent as the bootleggers, rum runners, and  moonshiners during the Prohibition period. Prohibition increased the demand for alcohol,  fueled organized crime giving birth to the speakeasy and an  underground/”bootleg” culture.  The demand for Levi’s also increased during times of regulation a”s did the “bootlegging of Levi’s.   Could you imagine getting your Levi’s from Al Capone or even “bootlegging” Levi’s? What if there were secret clubs for Levi’s wearers? There are so many possibilities, but I really like the idea of a 1920’s Levi’s Speakeasy.  That would make a sick TV commercial…

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