No, Modesty Does Not “Empower” Women


I recently came upon an article via Ladies Against Feminism titled 4 Reasons Modesty Empowers Women (And Porn Does Not). Let's start with the title. The title contrasts "modesty" and "porn," seemingly unaware that the two are not the only options, or that there is a huge difference between porn on the one hand, and an ordinary person wearing "revealing" clothing she just happens to like on the other.Now let's move on to the post itself:Modern women everywhere are taught that it’s pe … [Read more...]

Be Pretty, but Not Too Pretty


I was struck by this particular line in Kate Schell's list of modesty rules:Be pretty, but not too pretty.After blogging abut Kate's list, I blogged about a No Greater Joy article in which the author equated dressing modestly with being beautiful. My daughters won’t dress like a strange woman either. Mine, at only 9 years old, knows that she should keep her body from a man’s eyes, reserving it for her future husband. In the grocery store one day, when my daughter was wearing a skirt tha … [Read more...]

Nine-Year-Old Sluts and Masturbating Dinner Guests

Pearls Modesty

While searching for an image to use to illustrate the concept "modesty," I came upon this image:I noticed that the image was from, so I clicked through. The article was titled "Sobering Issues---Modesty." It began with a letter from a woman who had read Created To Be His Help Meet and disagreed with Debi's treatment of Lydia in the story titled "Bad Bob." If you remember, Lydia, the youth pastor's wife, wore a tight skirt which, well, as the story tells it, basically … [Read more...]

The Modesty Rules—Not So Simple, Really


I often heard, growing up, that dressing modestly wasn't about rules, it was about the heart attitude. In other words, if you were focused on the right thing---on God---you would naturally dress modestly, without having to run through a list of rules. You wouldn't even think about wearing short shorts, or showing your midriff, or wearing clothing that accentuates your bust.Of course, all of this ignores the fact that dressing in unapproved ways does not actually require intent to lead young … [Read more...]

It Starts at Five


Sally is five years old and will be heading off to kindergarten in the fall. She climbs trees and looks for worms in the dirt and gets bruises on her shins. She's an active and perfectly normal little girl. On a recent visit to my parents' house, Sally showed off a new dress to my mother. This dress, which has a slit up to the knee on one side, has become one of Sally's favorites. Why? Because she says it makes her look like Elsa from the movie Frozen, of course!"Grandma, look at my dress!" … [Read more...]

“Modest Is Hottest” and Girls’ Self-Confidence


By now, you've probably heard "modest is hottest" thrown around like a mantra. There are "modest is hottest" fashion shows and "modest is hottest" conferences for girls. It's about time I weighed in.Frankly, I'm conflicted. When I was a teen striving to dress modestly, I struggled with body image. I covered my body in baggy clothing. I felt unattractive, and that affected how I carried and viewed myself. So I like the idea that in many churches girls like I was are now being encouraged to … [Read more...]

The Female Body, a Source of Contamination


I recently came upon a blog post titled "How the Modesty Police Are Hurting My Son," in which blogger Ami writes about trying to teach her son that he is responsible for his own actions even as those around her tell him that girls are responsible for covering up so as to "protect" him. As I looked through the mostly positive comments on her post, I was struck by this one: I think it’s great that you teach your child all these things---and I think it’s great that parents teach their children mod … [Read more...]