Follow or lead, can I rebel? Can I conform? This has been and will still be a continuous battle fought as a society or individual. Conformity is required in society to ensure order exists in the society or life. Laws play an important role in the community (Birtwistle and Moore). Taking these control, laws, expectation or even the rule to extreme ends will result in various rebellion forms. Living in a community that views fashion as an evil act to follow is a challenge. Unlike a greatness-and-glory I thought and believed existed out there and was golden awaiting my discovery as well as conquest, fashion trend is priceless, simple and great idea to follow. Fashion involves popular practices or styles, especially in footwear, makeup, clothing, body, accessories as well as the hairstyles (Brannon). Cultural and religious practices in my community rooted the fashion to immoral practices. People following fashion like hairstyle, clothing, and footwear among others are associated with immoral practices. Prostitutes or gangs style was the major names given to these people. Deciding to rebel or conform to my community view and believe on fashion trend involved a journey of life experiences.
I felt different though, unlike my mother and sisters, I believed that fashion was a great idea to make everyone beautiful or handsome and equal. My mother and my four sisters were contented by this cultural belief. Anytime we walked with them in the street they would always criticize the young men and ladies intending to deviate from the cultural dressing, hairstyle or any form of culture. I desired to please my mother and our community at large was against fashion. Pastors, bishops, teachers and great people in the community emphasized on comparing fashion to the great devil that unwraps morals from the life of the young people. As a result, punishments were introduced to the punishing those following these fashion trend. However, my point of view was different; fashion was an important practice that was to improve the life of many people in the community (Birtwistle and Moore). Fashion could end the discrimination that classified people as beautiful or handsome. This fashion had the capacity of having people explore the best practices that can improve their look and life. However, it was hard to choose between pleasing the community and my mother as well as leaving myself with my own opinions of what fashion meant (Abrahamson).
My anti-fashion community made it hard for me to take the root that I felt was the best. Men and women had a default way of dressing, making hair as well as a living. The men wearing involved a trouser and a long-sleeved shirt and women dressing is a long skirt and blouse or a full dress covering the knees. A natural face look and a short hair for men and long hair for women was the recommended style. A man with long hair faced punishment. Men with dreadlocked were considered as gangs in the community. The women as well had to wear skirts that were long; short skirts took the view of prostitution. Any change to the normal dressing or practice in the community received a punishment (Birtwistle and Moore). The new living styles portrayed a bad image to the community. This new practice displayed a rebellion to the counsels, rules, and regulations of the community. Pastors, bishops, teachers and great people in the community emphasized on comparing fashion to the great devil that unwraps morals from the life of the young people. I felt this was a primitive way of reasoning in the community, but facing the community with my understanding need more courage that no one was ready to offer. Going against this way of living meant losing my entire family, family support, a marriage partner, school to study as well as the church to attend.
All people in the community, young and old, had fixed mind on the fashion trend issue. Fashion made no sense to all people. My teachers, parents, and peers vied it a moral decay system that will brainwash the young people. Personally, I knew adoption of fashion trend was to improve many fields in the country. Starting from the media industry, fashion trend could crease creativity, appearance among other aspects. In the working places, fashion would have introduced numerous ways of dressing as well as improve an individual presentation. Fashion can change individual ways of approaching the problems through developing the confidence of the person (Giesen). In the overall view, fashion could change everyone to fit any career without thinking about the beauty. Young people would benefit from fashion much. It will make this young person competitive in every field. In the same, fashion, trend adoption will increase the community economy. However, I had no way of changing these people’s view on the fashion trend. No one listened to my understanding or rather gave me the opportunity to make convince them. Mentioning of the word fashion trend made everyone flee away from me (Schug). I lost friends and got many warnings concerning my way of thinking because my views were encouraging immoral acts in the society.
My history class changed my way of reasoning; it illustrated to me what it means to call for change. While studying my country independence history, I realized that every right came as a result of a few people who were ready to lose all even their lives. This historical records played an important role in encouraging me to be myself. I felt I had a great idea that would change every aspect of my community. Keeping my thoughts had no profits to me and my community. This community needed not a lecture for change but an example to imitate. The coming generations needed a new perspective on the fashion trend. The political class, developing technology, economy, as well as the culture, will benefit from fashion trend (Schug). The politicians will have the ability to look presentable and portray the good leadership image; this is because dressing shows an individual personality. Technology as well is important in creating fashion trend. Also, the economy of the country can increase significantly with fashion as it tends to change creating more market. I had to take the path of the few to create a change in the community (Brannon). My life had to reflect what fashion trend meant to me in spite of all the opposition I had to face.
Considering the last few years I have lived, I am happy I was motivated by adventure and curiosity in the fashion world. Fashion trend in my community today is a great achievement. The new industry and the praise of fashion in my community make me forget all the tribute I underwent. This achievement came up with a lot of sacrifices such as family relationship lose, school change and church excommunication. However, my life outside our community enabled me to learn more about fashion trend and get my first award as a fashion model in my country. Deviation from the understanding of fashion trends as an immoral act paid at last. Today, almost every career category advocates for fashion directly or indirectly. For instance, media is playing a critical role in fashion. A good example is the fashion journalism (Birtwistle and Moore). The YouTube and the fashion blogging are among the methods used to spread fashion and trends tips. Instagram, Facebook, among other websites have aided as well in spreading the fashion and trends in the society today. Magazines as well are spreading the fashions that make the community enlightened. Anthropology has emerged which involves the study of human and cultural societies, allowing the evaluation reasons for esteeming other styles more than others and classification of the inappropriate and appropriate styles. Currently, fashion has improved the outlook of a person, and it is rare to d people who are ugly. Therefore, fashion trend has taken the meaning of being an activity that profits every field of life and especially contributes to the economy of the community (Abrahamson).
In conclusion, it is a great challenge when it comes to deciding on whether to conform or rebel on various aspects of life. My life understanding of fashion trend has been different from my community understanding. My community defined fashion change as an immoral act is causing young people’s moral principles decay in the society. The fashion change adds no value to the people, and therefore any change was highly discouraged at every level. On my understanding, I knew fashion change had numerous benefits to the society (Abrahamson). Starting from making everyone beautiful, improving personality to an aspect that cannot be separated from the real world situation. Fashion is linked to politics, technology, and career development. Inspired by the historical events like the independence that gave the true meaning of fighting for development, I had to deviate from the anti-fashion culture to a culture that values fashion. This achievement came up with a lot of sacrifices such as family relationship lose, school change and church excommunication. However, it yielded a positive result, increasing the spread of fashion in the community as well as people changing their perspective on fashion change.
Abrahamson, Eric. “Management Fashion.” Academy of Management Review, vol. 21, no. 1, 1996, pp. 254–285.
Birtwistle, Grete, and Christopher M. Moore. “Fashion Clothing–where Does It All End Up?” International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, vol. 35, no. 3, 2007, pp. 210–216.
Brannon, Evelyn L. Fashion Forecasting. Fairchild Books, 2005.
Giesen, Barbara. Ethical Clothing: New Awareness Or Fading Fashion Trend? VDM, 2008.
Schug, Stephan A. Patient Satisfaction-Politically Correct Fashion of the Nineties or a Valuable Measure of Outcome? LWW, 2001.