Thursday, 13 November 2014 12:24

Likaat 2014 (6)

 Thursday, 13 November 2014

“Female clothes in south Lebanon: what culture do they transmit?”

presented by the researcher Ayat Nour ad-Din.

People are raised in communities and might not realize that they choose their clothes “unconsciously”. What we mean by this is that they have “unconsciously” certain standards that automatically lead them to choose specific clothes. These standards are cultural standards par excellence and differ according to cultural groups, so that, in a certain sense, we can say that when there are cultural differences between one group and another we can designate a difference between types of people.

But when we speak of specific samples of clothing pertaining to every cultural group this does not mean that every one of them wears the same clothes, for the types of clothing pertaining to that culture vary, and these are a result of several social factors, such as the economic factor, age, the social class, etc. Very often these types reflect the cultural mobility within the group itself. Therefore clothing no longer has only one role, and which it probably never had, which was to shield from heat or cold or the like. For clothes play several roles for the person wearing them, whether he/she is sometimes conscious of this but mostly not.

Thus we can say that clothes are one of the most important expressions of a person’s culture; and clothes are perhaps the most important objects that reflect a society’s diversity due to their dimensions, significance and cultural symbols that indicate a groups’ class, religion, history and so forth. Therefore someone studying a group’s dress code does not study only the clothes as such, but as one of the things leading to the study of this group’s culture.

Clothes, like the product of every of human culture are forever changing, although the pace of this change, its limits and depth vary according to different societies and communities. And when we speak of the globalization of certain types and styles of clothing we find that the choice, acceptance of some or the refusal of others, and the way they are used also express that culture we are looking for.



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