Re: Lesson 1: Group Identity
- Fascinating commentary about your experience in Brazil.
No matter the country, I bet everyone has found themselves
underdressed at some point. Isn't it interesting the social
expectations we place on ourselves!
--- In CostumeHistoryClass@yahoogroups.com, "Peter"
> The group that I want to focus on is the working class here in
> Brazil (Remeber that I live and work in Soutrh America´s biggest
> city, São Paulo).
> Working class Brazilians celebrate social/religious occasions in
> disticnt and clear ways - Very well and smartly dressed for
> and some chrasmatic church groups and virtually just and "old rag"Much
> for weddings. I once attended a wedding
> for which my wife had told me that it wasn´t at all necessary to
> wear anything formal because people are normally very informal.
> to my dismay I found out that it was exactly the opposite asEveryone
> everyone was extremely well dressed and made up. The women were
> mostly drressed in ball gowns and the men in two piece suits. No
> wool or silks though. Nylons and polyesters I suppose are always
> more cost effective but also better for the humidity. My wife and I
> are fairly laid back about fashion but I never attended a wedding
> again without formal dress. One has to conform some time or the
> Funerals on the other hand are almost the opposite extreme.
> seems to wear whatever was available in the closet on that day. Ihealth
> simple see this as not necessarily being a sign of disrespect but
> rather of a sense of life must go on!
> Social status is very important in Brazil but is not one of the
> major factors that determines something like dress sense. The vast
> majority of people identify themselves with the group and conforms
> to it. It is therefore difficult to point out in this group who is
> who just by looking at way someone is dressed. Individuals
> differentiate themselves in other ways for example by the cars they
> drive or the gated community they live in.
> Attraction between people is also not truly based on a clothes
> although clothes do help point out certain assets. Beauty and
> is very strong at the moment so it is very common to see young menphysical
> and women whose bodies are well toned through long and hard
> training. So much so that a pair of broad shoulders means more thanthe
> what´s inside of the head. I have to mention beach wear as this is
> also a definite major cause of physical attraction. Nudity on
> Brazilian beaches is a taboo. Women wearing a G-string bikini on
> other hand is the 8th wonder of the world. The idea of the prefectexpected
> from is taken literally in many cases so that Brazil is one of the
> world leaders in the number of corrective surgeries
> I believe that it is very difficult not to conform to the group as
> individuals who do not will be ostrasized. A good examaple of this
> was when I went to a local neighbourhood supermaket without shoes
> and was stared at as if I had slaughtered a holy cow. Individual
> tastes are not taken into account and these individuals are
> to conform or be excluded.