Sole Culture

By: Menappe Kinkoue Poufong

The Air Jordan Jumpman logo. (Nike)

The Air Jordan Jumpman logo. (Nike)

Chicago’s North Carolina-born hero, the famously dubbed G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time) Michael Jordan, has created a basketball-inspired empire without stepping onto the court in over ten years.

Jordan’s eventual empire was first established in 1984 after signing an endorsement deal with Nike one year after entering into the National Basketball Association (NBA) and signing a deal to play for the Chicago Bulls.

Throughout his historic career in the NBA, and many years after, the popularity of Jordan and his iconic shoes have taken flight.

In 2013, people of all ages can be seen showcasing Jordan’s iconic symbol, The Jumpman, on their sneakers. However, twenty-nine years later, how has Jordan’s brand remained fashionable?

Beverly Fleury (12) claims she likes Air Jordan sneakers because, “the style attracts me.” At the most, Fleury has even spent $300 on a pair of the sneakers.

Fleury said the media, like entertainment and music, have not influenced her to buy or wear Jordans because she started wearing them, “when I was a baby,” but she has seen the brand referenced on television and the internet.

Fleury is a fan of basketball. The Miami Heat small forward, LeBron James, is her favorite player but she is also a fan of former Chicago Bull shooting guard Michael Jordan, “because he’s a legend.”

Fleury believes the Air Jordan brand is influential today because, “people talk about them.” Fleury said she could “maybe” see herself wearing them 20 years from now, but the apparel does not interest her.

Kennedy Morales (10) likes Air Jordan sneakers because, “they are comfortable and cool in style.” He is a fan of Air Jordan apparel.

Morales believes that the media, in music specifically, has influenced him “a bit” in buying and wearing Jordans; to which he referred to the song “23” by Mike Will Made It featuring Miley Cyrus, Wiz Khalifa, and Juicy J.

Air Jordan sponsored athletes, such as New York Knick’s small forward Carmelo Anthony, Los Angeles Clipper’s power forward Blake Griffin, and Oklahoma City Thunder’s point guard Russell Westbrook, swayed Morales style as well.

Morales claims that people like Jordans, “because of Michael Jordan” since “he was a great basketball player.”

However, Morales believes the Air Jordan brand is “not really” significant and can’t see himself wearing them 20 years from now because the shoes are, “more of a teen thing.”

Whether or not the Air Jordan brand’s popularity has longevity, it has great prominence in today’s teenage culture.