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American Able Ad

abby rose's picture

I recently stumbled across a series of images that depicted Jes Sachse, a 25-year old college student with Freeman-Sheldon Syndrome, in her own recreation of the provocative American Apparel adveritsements that are seen pasted all over newspapers, billboards, and the Internet. More often than not, these ads display young, able-bodied, attractive young people in sexy poses and scenarios while they sport minimal amounts of American Apparel merchandise. Sachse took these images into her own hands and created her own ad campaign: American Able. The American Able ads feature Sachse in the typical scenes that one would find in your everyday American Apparel ad while she displays her disability. Sachse's ads show us that those with disabilities are still sexual beings and can instill desire. By including nudity and provocation in her images, Sachse brings attention to the fact that many people disregard completely the sexuality of many disabled individuals at the first sign of difference. At the same time, these ads call out American Apparel for their ad campaigns that claim to include "normal, everyday people" in spite of the fact that their models all fit a certain aesthetic. I know that American Apparel occasionally breaks out of the norm by casting older, gray-haired women and trans men and women, and I wonder if/when they will include an individual with a visible disability in their advertisements. 


(I had trouble attaching the image and maintaining its quality, so here is the link to one of the images.)