An internet search will reveal that 'Vicars and Tarts' party costumes are still readily available despite no longer knowing which is the vicar! For many it was all a bit of innocent fun. The Vicars and Tarts party illustrated above was a refined affair but not all such parties had a happy ending. I have not been to a Vicars and Tarts party :( but had I been, dressed as a tart, at my age I would have had no option but to play it for laughs as a pantomime dame.
But "All this laughing turns to crying", my mother-in-law used to say. This is amply demonstrated by the images of the new SlutWalk craze. As Eve strives ever more to be Adam the edges of who is who and what is what have become blurred. The body as the 'temple of the Holy Spirit' is a concept that few recognise today.
The sexulisation of children is abhorrent but opinions on how to deal with the problem differ. Fathers are naturally protective of their daughters and do not want to see them exploited. Gratuitous provocativeness is unacceptable and is not something to be instilled at an early age. In adulthood the problem has become absurd with semi-naked, drunken women out for a good time often revealing far more than may have been intended. While there is no excuse for treating women as sex objects they should be sensitive to the art of being provocative keeping it where intended, not parading it on the streets. If they think it another victory for feminism they are mistaken. To play the tart is one thing, to parade oneself as a slut is an entirely different ball game.