Academic Master

Sociology

Fashion Trends And Social Conformity

Follow or lead, can I rebel? Can I confirm? 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 society or life. Laws play an important role in the community (Birtwistle and Moore). Taking these controls, laws, expectations, or even the rules to extreme ends will result in various forms of rebellion.

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 goldenly awaiting my discovery as well as conquest, fashion trends are priceless, simple, and a great idea to follow. Fashion involves popular practices or styles, especially in footwear, makeup, clothing, body, accessories as well as hairstyles (Brannon). Cultural and religious practices in my community are rooted in the fashion of immoral practices. People following fashion, like hairstyle, clothing, and footwear, among others, are associated with immoral practices. Prostitutes or gang style were the major names given to these people. Deciding to rebel or conform to my community’s view and beliefs on fashion trends 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 content with this cultural belief. Anytime we walked with them in the street, they would always criticize the young men and women who were intending to deviate from the cultural dress, 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 comparing fashion to the great devil that unwraps morals from the life of the young people. As a result, punishments were introduced to punish those following these fashion trends. However, my point of view was different; fashion was an important practice that was to improve the lives of many people in the community (Birtwistle and Moore). Fashion could end the discrimination that classified people as beautiful or handsome. This fashion has the capacity to allow people to explore the best practices that can improve their looks 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 wore trousers and a long-sleeved shirt, and the women’s dress was a long skirt and blouse or a full dress covering the knees. A natural face look, short hair for men, and long hair for women were the recommended styles. A man with long hair faced punishment. Men with dreadlocks were considered gangs in the community. The women also 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 against the counsels, rules, and regulations of the community. Pastors, bishops, teachers, and great people in the community emphasized 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 needed more courage than anyone 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 minds on the fashion trend issue. Fashion made no sense to all people. My teachers, parents, and peers vied it a moral decay system that would brainwash the young people. Personally, I knew the adoption of fashion trends was to improve many fields in the country. Starting from the media industry, a fashion trend could create creativity and appearance, among other aspects. In the workplace, fashion would have introduced numerous ways of dressing as well as improved individual presentation. Fashion can change individual ways of approaching problems by developing the confidence of the person (Giesen). In the overall view, fashion could change everyone to fit any career without thinking about beauty. Young people would benefit from fashion. It will make this young person competitive in every field. In the same way, the adoption of fashion trends will increase the community economy. However, I had no way of changing these people’s views on the fashion trend. No one listened to my understanding or rather gave me the opportunity to convince them. Mentioning 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 society.

My history class changed my way of reasoning; it illustrated to me what it means to call for change. While studying my country’s independence history, I realized that every right came as a result of a few people who were ready to lose even their lives. These 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 for 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, and culture will benefit from fashion trends (Schug). Politicians will have the ability to look presentable and portray a good leadership image; this is because dressing shows an individual personality. Technology is also important in creating fashion trends. Also, the economy of the country can increase significantly with fashion as it tends to change, creating more markets. I had to take the path of the few to create a change in the community (Brannon). My life had to reflect what fashion trends 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. The fashion trend in my community today is a great achievement. The new industry and the praise of fashion in my community made me forget all the tribute I underwent. This achievement came with a lot of sacrifices, such as family relationships, school change, and church ex-communication. However, my life outside our community enabled me to learn more about fashion trends 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, the media plays a critical role in fashion. A good example is fashion journalism (Birtwistle and Moore). YouTube and fashion blogging are among the methods used to spread fashion and trend tips. Instagram and Facebook, among other websites, have also aided in spreading the fashion and trends in society today. Magazines are also spreading the fashions that make the community enlightened. Anthropology has emerged, which involves the study of human and cultural societies, allowing the evaluation of 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 see people who are ugly. Therefore, fashion trends have 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 whether to conform or rebel in various aspects of life. My life understanding of fashion trends has been different from my community’s understanding. My community defined fashion change as an immoral act that is causing young people’s moral principles to decay in society. The fashion change adds no value to the people, and therefore, any change is highly discouraged at every level. From my understanding, I knew fashion change had numerous benefits to society (Abrahamson). Starting from making everyone beautiful and improving their personalities to an aspect that cannot be separated from the real world. Fashion is linked to politics, technology, and career development. Inspired by 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 with a lot of sacrifices, such as family relationships, school change, and church ex-communication. However, it yielded a positive result, increasing the spread of fashion in the community and changing people’s perspectives on fashion change.

Work Cited

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.

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