Murses

Utter the term “murse” anywhere and it’s instantly recognizable: the portmanteau of “man” and “purse” describing a compact bag or satchel meant for hauling things around town. It’s become patient zero of emasculating menswear—now we have “meggings” and “mewelry” to name a few of the more egregious.

But how did we, as a society, get here?

It’s a good question. One worth exploring. And as menswear anthropologists, in our quest to understand the inextricable link between manhood and baggage choice, we present to you:

A complete history of men and their bags in popular culture.

 
Peter FondaPeter Fonda’s backpack from Easy Rider (1969)

 
ChewbaccaChewbacca’s barely visible yet ever-present satchel (1977)

 
Indiana JonesIndiana Jones’s adventure satchel (1981)

 
MacGyverMacGyver’s multi-use man bag (1985)

 
John McClaneJohn McClane’s over-the-shoulder bag in Die Hard (1988)

 
George CostanzaGeorge Costanza’s fanny pack (1990)

 
HawkeyeHawkeye’s bag in Last of the Mohicans (1992)

 
BriefcasesAny number of briefcases full of money or guns (timeless)

 
Hulk HoganHulk Hogan’s fanny pack (1994)

 
Samuel L. JacksonSamuel L. Jackson with Marsellus Wallace’s soul in a briefcase in Pulp Fiction (1994)

 
Jerry SeinfeldJerry Seinfeld’s “It’s not a purse, it’s European” bag (1998)

 
Joey’s Bag“The One with Joey’s Bag” (1999)

 
Jonathan Rhys-MeyersJonathan Rhys Meyers’s tennis-bag-cum-gun-case in Match Point (2005)

 
Terrence HowardTerrence Howard’s black-tie man clutch (2005)

 
Dexter MorganDexter Morgan’s camera bag in Dexter (2006–)

 
Snoop DoggSnoop Dogg’s (pre-Lion) Louis Vuitton (2007)

 
Tom BradyTom Brady’s man bag (2007)

 
Zach GalifianakisZach Galifianakis’s “It’s not a purse, it’s a satchel” in The Hangover (2009)

 
Lenny KravitzLenny Kravitz’s matching boots and bag (2010)

 
Ryan GoslingRyan Gosling’s bowling bag in Drive (2011)

 
Kanye WestKanye West’s bag as he sartorially flips PETA the bird (2011)

 
Cristiano RonaldoCristiano Ronaldo’s selection of murses (2012)

  • Kempt Staff