Day: July 6, 2020

The Fashion of ‘Karen’ is Changing. Her Personality Isn’t.

Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast/Getty
Photo Illustration by Elizabeth Brockway/The Daily Beast/Getty

The archetypical Karen has ruined countless cookouts and lemonade stands, and she’s made a mess of a few telltale accessories. Close your eyes and think of the kind of privileged woman who might call the cops on any slight, perceived inconvenience: spiky bob haircut, chunky highlights, oversized sunglasses from Nordstrom Rack propped upon her head to communicate a self-bestowed authority. 

The idea of a woman gleefully rifling through her discount Coach bag in search of a cellphone, ready to tattle on Black people just trying to eat, or celebrate, or birdwatch in peace, is a well-trodden cliché.

Thanks to visual culture, we know Karen when we see her, often before she even opens her mouth. 

Patricia McCloskey, the St. Louis lawyer and neighbor from hell who stood alongside her armed husband and pointed a gun at protesters, was quickly likened to

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