‘Let Them Buy Louboutins’: Ivanka Trump and Working Women

ivanka trump
Photo by Cvent (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

In a scathing piece in The Nation, Amy Wilentz methodically eviscerates and examines the guts of Ivanka Trump’s brand, and her efforts on behalf of working women — a specific brand of privileged, white, upper-class working women, that is.

IvankaTrump.com does have a section called “Wise Words” (“Nothing is impossible. The word itself says ‘I’m possible’”—Audrey Hepburn; or “It’s never too late to be what you might have been,” wrongly attributed to George Eliot; or “Challenges are opportunities”—so anodyne it’s not attributed to anyone.) But you’ll never read anything here about processing chickens or serving up burgers or sewing jeans, or what it’s like to be a secretary, a receptionist, a nurse, a hairdresser, a teacher, a saleswoman, a waitress, a bookkeeper, a cashier, or any of the other jobs at which most American women work.

IvankaTrump.com prefers to address style and fashion, what you can buy for work and what you should wear to work, rather than the substance of work. It includes tips on how to get promoted and tips for thinking like a Harvard Business School graduate; it includes pages about yoga for the workday, as well as about entertaining and lifestyle and exercise and what to eat and what to serve. So far, wages, discrimination, and sexual harassment have not been on the radar, not even in a Lean In–lite kind of way. That’s not the purpose of the website. It should be hashtagged #womenwhobuy.

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