Well there goes the semiotic neighborhood. Rachel Matthews, a "celebrity knitter," has kicked up quite a kerfuffle in the UK for writing a book on how to knit historical tyrants. She's got Idi Amin, Pol Pot, Saddam Hussein and—because to leave him out would have been unthinkable—Adolf Hitler. The ever excitable Abe Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League pulled this sheaf of prefab outrage right off the roll: "To popularize a soft, knit version of Hitler insults the memory of those who died in the Holocaust, the survivors, and those who fought against the Nazis." Not to mention what it does to the image of a pastime beloved by harmless bubbes everywhere. Is it just me or does the Knitler (thank you, I'm here all week) look a little big-hipped and sassy in a "talk to the sieg hail, girlfriend" sorta way? After the jump, knitters united respond:
One commenter on a knitting website called the book "ludicrious and repulsive," cutely worrying that Matthews has sullied the good name of knitters everywhere: "We knitters need to tell the world that she does not represent us and that the majority of us are kind, charitable, concerned, caring people."