Clothing Appropriation

Discussion of fashion elements and looks that are traditionally considered somewhat "femme" but are presented in a masculine context. This is NOT about transvestism or crossdressing.

Clothing Appropriation

Postby jamodu » Wed May 30, 2018 11:10 am

Recently, I've come across the term 'Cultural Appropriation' - where, for example, one cultural group accuses another of adopting its clothing.

One such story appeared in The Guardian newspaper, where a White high-school female student was pictured in her Chinese inspired Dress (for her Prom) - https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... -usa-dress

I wonder if we, as Men, could similarly lay the claim against Women that over time they have appropriated our clothing. That is, by the 'masculine-like' clothes that they wear they have effectively appropriated our masculinity.

This, of course, is a double-edged sword, as Women could assert that by our Skirt/Dress wearing we are seeking to appropriate their femininity.

Such would be the double-standard if Women should ever comment on such a theoretical debate.
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Re: Clothing Appropriation

Postby rivegauche » Wed May 30, 2018 10:19 pm

I find it difficult to see the problem with cultural appropriation, It is a form of flattery and endorsement. We, by appropriating the clothing of women, are guilty of it. So what? I refuse to apologise for it. Let us not be intimidated but we are just as guilty of appropriating female clothing as they are of appropriating ours - let's not get carried away.
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Re: Clothing Appropriation

Postby moonshadow » Thu May 31, 2018 1:00 am

Yeah, I agree with rivegauche, I'd just leave this one alone and not go there....

I've seen the looks in some women's eyes that seemed to imply they were "offended" by my imitation of their various styles. But you know what... who really cares anyway?
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Re: Clothing Appropriation

Postby SkirtsDad » Thu May 31, 2018 1:04 am

rivegauche wrote:I find it difficult to see the problem with cultural appropriation, It is a form of flattery and endorsement. We, by appropriating the clothing of women, are guilty of it. So what? I refuse to apologise for it. Let us not be intimidated but we are just as guilty of appropriating female clothing as they are of appropriating ours - let's not get carried away.


Appropriating clothing from women is not the same as cultural appropriation. From what I understand you need a certain set of circumstances for it to happen or it becomes cultural exchange. Cultural appropriation is about a dominant power stealing fashion, ways of life etc. from an oppressed people.... for example, white colonials in South Africa wondering round in traditional African bead necklaces (hey look at me, I'm just like you!).... when they or their ancestor had massacred the tribes people.

What has happened here regarding the prom dress does not seem to fit into the category of cultural appropriation.... certainly not looking at the way some native Chinese have viewed it. A further point is that this 'traditional' dress was already appropriated and that form only dates back to around 1930.

The NYTimes has, what I found to be, an interesting article on it.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/02/world/asia/chinese-prom-dress.html

Something else that I note, it is not uncommon for descendants of immigrants to try to hold on to elements of their culture that no longer are viewed in the same way in the originating country. In the UK, 1st and 2nd generation Asian families are often stricter in their adherence to the social etiquette etc. brought by their elders, than people of the same age in, let's say, India, when the culture has changed. I suspect that this may be one of the reasons that there was more of a fuss made in the States about the dress than in China.
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Re: Clothing Appropriation

Postby Grok » Thu May 31, 2018 3:57 pm

I agree with the others, lets not go there.

Accept that the styles that were appropriated by women are now essentially unisex.
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