- The Washington Times
Friday, November 23, 2018

The first pair of shoes Rep.-elect Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez wore when she hit the campaign trail last spring are to be featured in an upcoming women’s empowerment exhibit at Cornell University.

The Cornell Costume Collection, titled “Women Empowered: Fashions from the Frontline,” will showcase the worn-out shoes the 29-year-old former bartender and self-described democratic socialist campaigned in before she handily defeated entrenched incumbent New York Rep. Joe Crowley for the Democratic Party’s nomination.

“Some folks are saying I won for ‘demographic’ reasons,” Ms. Ocasio-Cortez tweeted in June. “1st of all, that’s false. We won w/voters of all kinds. 2nd, here’s my 1st pair of campaign shoes. I knocked doors until rainwater came through my soles. Respect the hustle. We won bc we out-worked the competition. Period.”

Ms. Ocasio-Cortez’s shoes will join an array of clothing items worn by notable women, including collars from Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the inaugural suit worn by the late Texas Gov. Ann Richards and the skirt suit worn by her daughter, former Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards.

The exhibition, which will run from Dec. 6 to March 31, will chronicle how women “strategically use fashion for empowerment and collective upliftment,” organizers said in a release.

“Fashion has far too often been misunderstood and misrepresented as superficial,” Denise Green, director of the Cornell Costume & Textile Collection, which is funding the exhibit, said in a statement. “The garments and accessories in this exhibition show the very opposite: fashion is a highly visible and forceful medium that commands attention and communicates possibilities.”

• Jessica Chasmar can be reached at jchasmar@washingtontimes.com.

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