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UK Political Donor Demetri Marchessini: Women In Trousers Are Destroying Western Civilization

Marlene Dietrich oppressing man with her trousers.
Marlene Dietrich oppressing man with her trousers.

Demetri Marchessini is a retired Greek business tycoon, living in London, and has been a major donor to the right-wing, anti-immigrant UK Independence Party (UKIP). He also has some, let’s say, eccentric views about gay people, black people, women, and trousers, views so, er, eccentric that the folks in UKIP are a little embarrassed to be associated with him. Given that UKIP is filled with bigots in all varieties, that’s quite something.

In an interview last week with Britain’s Channel 4, Marchessini expounded at length on some of his more colorful views. He told interviewer Michael Crick that marital rape was impossible, because “you can’t have rape if you make love on Friday and make love on Sunday, you can’t say Saturday is rape. Once the woman accepts, she accepts.”

He argued that there is no such thing as homosexual love, only lust, because “they go out at nights and they pick up 5, 10, 15 different partners in one night.” Even gays in committed relationships are basically just roommates who still cruise for anonymous sex partners.

And he suggested that black slaves were better off as slaves in America than they would have been living in Africa, because if they survived the passage they lived longer.

But let’s just talk about the trouser thing. Marchessini thinks women should be banned from wearing trousers, because otherwise they just might bring about the end of western civilization.

No, really.

In a 2003 polemic with the innocent-sounding title Women In Trousers, Marchessini decried female trouser-wearing as “hostile behaviour – they are deliberately dressing in a way that is opposite to what men would like.”

In his interview last week, he explained just how hostile an act trouser-wearing really is. Here’s the whole discussion, from the extended transcript of the interview he posted on his website. I’m putting some of the best bits in bold, but, seriously, the whole thing is pure gold. 

Michael Crick: You wrote this book about women wearing trousers. Explain your position there.

Demetri Marchessini: Well this is a very … there are quite a few reasons why women shouldn’t wear trousers. The point of the book, was that photographs of women on the street, they weren’t posed, women walking down the street, and the point of the book is they were all photographed from the rear, because women do not realise what they look like from the rear, they can’t see themselves from the rear. And they don’t realise how terrible they look from the rear. And this was just a series of photographs, of actual photographs of women walking by and a lot of people didn’t like this, because it’s become a political matter.

Michael Crick: So do you think women should be banned from wearing trousers?

Demetri Marchessini: Yes.

Michael Crick: What, by law?

Demetri Marchessini: They used to be, for thousands of years. Did you know that until two or three hundred years ago a woman wearing trousers would be executed? Did you know that?

Michael Crick: Well presumably you’re not advocating returning to that position?

Demetri Marchessini: No, but I am returning to thinking that this is an important matter, something to think about, whereas now they don’t think about it.

Michael Crick: And you think that women are unsuited to certain jobs?

Demetri Marchessini: Wait a minute, let’s just finish this thing.

Michael Crick: Sorry, yeah.

Demetri Marchessini: The first thing is the Bible. If you are a Christian the Bible says anyone who wears the clothes of the opposite sex is an abomination. If you’re a Christian woman you can’t be wearing trousers.

Michael Crick: I would have thought the vast majority of Christians in this country today would say that’s rubbish.

Demetri Marchessini: Well I’m sorry, they’re perfectly free to say the Bible is rubbish, but if you believe in the Bible you can’t wear trousers, it’s up to you to decide. Secondly, for thousands of years after that, it was a crime for both sexes and then eventually when they started wearing trousers, which was after the First War, there were several reasons not to wear trousers. The first is they don’t look as nice as skirts; the second is trousers don’t excite men. Only skirts excite men.

Michael Crick: Why should women dress to excite men?

Demetri Marchessini: Because that’s the only way the world is going to continue. If they don’t, then men are going to stop fucking them, you understand, and may I tell you, with great respect, that the incidence of lovemaking in Western Europe has fallen drastically.

Michael Crick: What, because women wear trousers?

Demetri Marchessini: Well I think that’s one factor. Another factor is because women work. The fact is if men don’t make love to women the Western world is going to disappear.

So Warren Farrell is angry at women for dressing (or undressing) to excite men; Demetri Marchessini is angry at them for not dressing to excite men.

Oh, and in case you’re wondering why women look so terrible from behind, Marchessini helpfully provides a link to another post on his blog which offers this explanation:

[N]ature has shaped women differently from men, and it is women who have curves, and as a result, big bottoms.  Men are more straight up and down.  It is women who are, therefore, invariably photographed for their bottoms.  Furthermore, since women have started wearing trousers, this situation has become worse.  Trousers are made for men’s bodies, not for women’s bodies.  As a result, they highlight big bottoms.  Nevertheless, women go on wearing them.

Evidently, he does not like big butts, and he cannot lie.

Big thanks to the trouser-wearing Titianblue for tipping me off to this important story.

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Bina
Bina
6 years ago

If it bothers him so much, I shall wear pants forever! >evil cackle<

titianblue
titianblue
6 years ago

What is it with misogynists and women’s butts? I suppose it could be because that’s the main view they get of women – the back view as the women run in the opposite direction.

LBT
LBT
6 years ago

Him and Tom Martin ought to hang out, seeing how fascinated they are by buttocks.

Also, I laughed, because I’m freakin’ GAY and I still responded with, “Wow, damn,” at that picture of Marlene Dietrich.

Darth_Conans
Darth_Conans
6 years ago

Without being too crude, clearly this is a man who has never seen a woman in tight jeans.

hellkell
hellkell
6 years ago

Thanks for the Boner Note, Demetri. My ass in pants laughs in your general direction.

informash12358
informash12358
6 years ago

I know this is maybe the… tenth- or eleventh-biggest problem with his statements, but how, exactly, do form-fitting trousers not look good?

banshee
banshee
6 years ago

I’m retired. Pants and tee shirts are my uniform!

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
6 years ago

Well, that gave me the impetus I needed to buy yet another pair of skinny jeans. Thanks, Demetri!

LBT
LBT
6 years ago

RE: informash12358

Didn’t you know? This dude’s boner dictates all male feelings ever. If his boner isn’t stirred by form-fitting pants, then by god, none of us will!

Carrie Kube
6 years ago

When will they realize not every man has the same tastes as they do?

Also what is it with many of the right-wing’s new-found ignorance about how bad slavery was for black people? Are they being dragged from the homelands, forced to work for nothing, torn away from their families, seen as animals, not able to report white men raping them, forced to eat bugs if they missed one on the crops, beaten, not allowed to marry, etc. For a party that brags about being the “party of Lincoln and MLK” you’d think they’d know better.

titianblue
titianblue
6 years ago

Did you know that until two or three hundred years ago a woman wearing trousers would be executed?

Really? In the UK (’cause I’m certain this charmer isn’t talking about any of those dreaful foreighn places)?

I thought she could potentially go on to have an interesting career

in the navy

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Brown_%28sailor%29

As a privateer

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jeanne_de_Clisson

In the army

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phoebe_Hessel

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hannah_Snell

LBT
LBT
6 years ago

RE: Carrie Kube

Um. MLK and Lincoln didn’t come from the UK… this is a totally different party, yo.

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
6 years ago

Random – watch this one guy do more to bring attention to men in crisis due to homelessness, an issue that MRAs pretend to care about, than any of them have ever done.

(I know this video is really old, but figured I’d share it anyway for people who haven’t seen it.)

Colleen from Tarsus
Colleen from Tarsus
6 years ago

I wear yoga pants pretty much every day, since I am a stay-at-home mom. These two facts seem to conflict (I wear pants, and yet I have also reproduced. How is this possible???) Clearly I must’ve used feeeeeemale wiles to get my husband to sex me even though I was wearing *shudder* PANTS.

I just delurked; hi everyone. I have been lurking here a long time. 🙂

cloudiah
6 years ago

Oh this is indeed comedy gold. Wowza.

Robert
Robert
6 years ago

I may be garbling the quote, but there’s a line in Shaw’s “Caesar and Cleopatra” that comes to mind. Caesar, explaining an outraged comment from his English slave Britannicus, says to a puzzled Egyptian, “Forgive him; he is a barbarian, and believes the customs of his tribe to be the laws of Nature.”

Or, in this wowser’s case, the customs of his boner.

cloudiah
6 years ago

Hi Colleen from Tarsus! Please enjoy your Welcome Package.

katz
6 years ago

Also what is it with many of the right-wing’s new-found ignorance about how bad slavery was for black people? Are they being dragged from the homelands, forced to work for nothing, torn away from their families, seen as animals, not able to report white men raping them, forced to eat bugs if they missed one on the crops, beaten, not allowed to marry, etc. For a party that brags about being the “party of Lincoln and MLK” you’d think they’d know better.

Remember when Richard Cohen was shocked, shocked I tell you, when he watched 12 Years a Slave and discovered that slavery was bad?

LBT
LBT
6 years ago

RE: katz

…I shouldn’t be sad, but I am. Seriously, Cohen, your freakin’ name is fucking Jewish! WHAT’S THE ONE ANCIENT STORY ABOUT THE JEWS EVERYONE REMEMBERS? (And no, not fucking Hanukkah.)

Marie
6 years ago

“In a 2003 polemic with the innocent-sounding title Women In Trousers, Marchessini decried female trouser-wearing as “hostile behaviour – they are deliberately dressing in a way that is opposite to what men would like.”

I wonder how long (if ever) it will take these guys to figure out that most women don’t dress for men. I mean, it takes a large amount of self centered ness to assume half the population is dressing for you.,.

“women do not realise what they look like from the rear, they can’t see themselves from the rear. And they don’t realise how terrible they look from the rear.”

He does know mirrors exist, right?
…. Rearsrearsrearsrears /what he sounds like to me.

“ell I’m sorry, they’re perfectly free to say the Bible is rubbish, but if you believe in the Bible you can’t wear trousers, it’s up to you to decide. Secondly, for thousands of years after that, it was a crime ”

Can’t you also not wear certain threads together, or eat shellfish? Maybe I’m remembering things wrong, but I don’t think ‘don’t wear trousers, ladies’ was a big part of the bible. I mean call me silly, I thought the book was mostly about god…

“Demetri Marchessini: Because that’s the only way the world is going to continue.”

Hahhahahhahahaha omigod this guy is pure gold XD

Marie
6 years ago

@colleen

Hi and welcome 😀

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

Does this douche not know that men’s pants and women’s pants are cut differently to fit the bodies they were made for?

LBT
LBT
6 years ago

You know, my husband has a thing for declaring, “PANTS ARE THE OPPRESSOR! DOWN WITH PANTS!” and has created a tumblr tag called “the terrible tyranny of trousers,” but I’m pretty sure that’s NOT what he meant.

katz
6 years ago

Hi Colleen! Psst, I am secretly also a Colleen.

katz
6 years ago

You know, my husband has a thing for declaring, “PANTS ARE THE OPPRESSOR! DOWN WITH PANTS!” and has created a tumblr tag called “the terrible tyranny of trousers,” but I’m pretty sure that’s NOT what he meant.

He should hang out at our place. It turns into a pants-free zone every summer.

Colleen from Tarsus
Colleen from Tarsus
6 years ago

Thank you so much for the welcome package, cloudiah! I can’t seem to make a kitty avatar; is it not possible on an iPad (I went to the page, but there’s nothing clickable there)?

I’m not sure why it’s pants-wearing, of all things, that made me delurk, but here we are. Pants? Of all the issues to think about and try to affect in this world, that’s a thing that this guy thinks is important. Women in pants. I just don’t even.

DreamingRainne (@DreamingRainne)

hostile behaviour – they are deliberately dressing in a way that is opposite to what men would like

Is it not hostile for men to require women to dress as men would like? Without even offering to dress as women would like in return? Or does hostility only count when men are the targets?

I don’t think he cares how women actually look in trousers vs skirts; he just wants to be the one making their decisions for them. He’s not motivated by desire or attraction, he’s motivated by power.

Even women who choose to wear skirts, he probably thinks they’re sluts for “deliberately” dressing in a way that men like. Again, it’s a power thing. He wants to punish women, feel powerful over them, and will find any excuse.

Besides, by his own logic – that trousers, being designed for the male figure, unduly emphasize the female figure – shouldn’t he prefer women wearing trousers? Men who are into women tend to like the parts that make them look different from men. (Now that I think about it: It’s almost like their orientation is defined not by attraction (to women) but by unattraction (to other men). Go figure.)

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
6 years ago

Were you around for Tom Martin? Chairs. Proper chair cushioning is a very important misandry-related issue.

Colleen from Tarsus
Colleen from Tarsus
6 years ago

Hi everyone! Thanks for all the welcomes. 🙂

weirwoodtreehugger
6 years ago

There is also such a thing as a photograph. I’ve never seen a picture of my naked butt, but I have seen pictures of my clothed butt. I know what it looks like.

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
6 years ago

Also mirrors, windows, and so on. Apparently they think women are the opposite of owls in that our necks can’t move at all.

Alice Sanguinaria
6 years ago

Demetri Marchessini: They used to be, for thousands of years. Did you know that until two or three hundred years ago a woman wearing trousers would be executed? Did you know that?

This sounds like bullshit. Time to go research!

Also, my wardrobe of jeans brings all of the apocalypses to the yard. 😉

Retha
Retha
6 years ago

there are quite a few reasons why women shouldn’t wear trousers. The point of the book, was that photographs of women on the street, they weren’t posed, women walking down the street, and the point of the book is they were all photographed from the rear, because women do not realise what they look like from the rear, they can’t see themselves from the rear. And they don’t realise how terrible they look from the rear.

The first reason why they should not wear trousers is they look bad from the rear? Should women who look good from the rear (straight men, for example, will call J-Lo and Pippa Middleton such women) wear trousers? What should men who look bad from the rear wear?

More importantly, what should a horse’s rear like, well, certain men who want to make laws on female clothing, wear?

tealily
tealily
6 years ago

Every time I read something new from these amoebas I say a silent prayer of thanks and gratitude for my fantastic husband.

On the other hand, the current generation of homophobic, misogynistic, and racist old men can’t die off fast enough for me.

katz
6 years ago

Retha: -14/10.

samantha
samantha
6 years ago

He told interviewer Michael Crick that marital rape was impossible, because “you can’t have rape if you make love on Friday and make love on Sunday, you can’t say Saturday is rape. Once the woman accepts, she accepts.”

ooookaaaay…So, what he says with this little gem is that it makes no difference to the hubby whether or not wifey is enjoying the “love” making, and that she has no right to say no. Which makes her his property. Which also implies that hubby is just fine with wifey crying, angry, bruised and looking at him with hostility and fear. Goody. I cannot wait…

And he suggested that black slaves were better off as slaves in America than they would have been living in Africa, because if they survived the passage they lived longer.

Right. Being free to make your choices, have a family, live life according to your own dreams is bad. Being owned is good because your enslaved, exhausted, miserable, choiceless life, where your spouse and kids can be sold off at massa’s will, is longer. Goody, again.

Marchessini decried female trouser-wearing as “hostile behaviour – they are deliberately dressing in a way that is opposite to what men would like.”

Uh huh. Dressing to be comfortable, or simply dressing in trousers because you like the feel and look is bad. Dressing to please men is good because we all know that we are only allowed to exist because man pleasing. How scrumptiously deranged.

The fact that this person would like to have it, once again, illegal for women to wear masculine clothing simply says that he wants to turn the clock back to the bad old days. If anyone here has access to H.G. Wells’s time machine, let me know. It would be an honor and a pleasure to send him back to a time in which he would be happy…preferably one before the advent of antibiotics and pain killers. Oh, dear…how unladylike and snarky of me.

colleenfromtarsus
6 years ago

I think I figured out the avatar thing with the assistance of my husband (he helped me even though I am wearing pants. Does that make him a mangina?)

Let’s see if it worked!

Retha
Retha
6 years ago

Demetri Marchessini: The first thing is the Bible. If you are a Christian the Bible says anyone who wears the clothes of the opposite sex is an abomination. If you’re a Christian woman you can’t be wearing trousers.

Men in the Bible wore robes. That is way more dress-like than pants-like. So dress-wearing women wear what men wore. High heels, pink and lace all started out as men’s fashion.

katz
6 years ago

-16/10

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

he Bible says anyone who wears the clothes of the opposite sex is an abomination. If you’re a Christian woman you can’t be wearing trousers.

Pretty sure the men in the Bible didn’t wear trousers either. The gendering of clithing is entirely cultural, and at this point you’d be hard-pressed to find many people who don’t think of pants as unisex clothing. Stupid argument is stupid.

And this was just a series of photographs, of actual photographs of women walking by and a lot of people didn’t like this, because it’s become a political matter.

Or maybe they didn’t like it because you published a bunch of photos of people with the express purpose of telling them they looked terrible.

England and France, they didn’t go to Africa with lassos to catch black slaves, they bought their black slaves from black slave dealers, in other words the slaves that they bought were already slaves, in Africa.

Dude, no. When you were a kid, and you got caught doing something naughty, did saying “well Johnny did it too” ever get you out of trouble? No, because you are responsible for your own actions. You don’t get to hit Marcus just because Jimmy started hitting him first, and you don’t get to enslave Marcus just because Jimmy enslaved him first. Goddamn.

There’s some gems in there about gay people, too. Like how there are no monogamous gay couples (sorry Robert and LBT) – just roommates who fuck each other between bouts of fucking other guys (gay women are not mentioned, quelle surprise).

This guy would fit right in here in the States.

emilygoddess
emilygoddess
6 years ago

Jimmy = Johnny, because I can’t keep a metaphor straight for an entire paragraph today.

Retha
Retha
6 years ago

katz: This is not the same thread or topic. I want to be gone from that other thread, but I did go back to try and appease and show compassion. I did not do it for myself, but to try and calm others with their feelings over my (perceived, in many cases) words. If you like to keep book of my presence here, you are welcome. But I can mock misogyny too.

Diana Adams
Diana Adams
6 years ago

Actually the Bible was written by people who didn’t wear trousers, so if this guy wears trousers, clearly he should be executed…

But anyways, the trousers were first worn by horse-riding people and they were worn by both sexes. For a long time the trousers were considered the mark of Barbarians by the ancient Greeks and Romans, later they were adopted, because of the warmth and comfort they provide. And guess what, this is also the reason why women today wear trousers too, because they are comfortable.

katz
6 years ago

Cross-thread posting is cumulative. Them’s the rules. You chose to say that you were leaving and then you chose not to actually leave. -18/10.

Retha
Retha
6 years ago

Leaving that thread and topic! Not leaving to never return to any topic on the blog! And yes, I returned even to that thread mostly because trying to appease hurting, angry, people was more important than me getting further verbal abuse. Or keeping my word to go. I went back because people and their feelings are important.

I’ll count this one for you -20/10.

justabrowngirl
6 years ago

Wow! Misagonist much. It boggle the mind to thinks this person have such a strong dislike to woman, except when he wants sex from them. So he basically wants a slave ( I thought those days were over…silly me).

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
6 years ago

Can I make a suggestion here? If you truly want to appease the people who your words hurt, apologize for the words. “I’m sorry that bad things happened to you” is great, but it’s not actually taking any responsibility for the impact that your words had on the person in question.

You can of course ignore this advice, but if you intend to keep commenting here it might not be a bad idea to give it some thought, because history indicates that the people who were upset probably aren’t going to just drop the subject without an actual apology.

titianblue
titianblue
6 years ago

Ok, I admit it. Jeanne d’Arc wore trousers and she was executed. Somehow, I don’t think she was executed for wearing the trousers, though. And it was a little more than 300 years ago.

Anyone got any further light to shed on the whole “executed for wearing trousers” claim?

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
6 years ago

Not unless you mean the light of truth and wisdom that Demetri thinks is shining brightly from his own bottom, no.

Bina
Bina
6 years ago

Let’s see…this guy’s with UKIP. UKIP is to do with the UK, yes? And so’s Scotland? Well…

Also, Mr. Marchessini is an idiot. But I guess everybody gathered as much.

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