Fashion Clothing for Indian Men, Really?
How Acceptable is Fashion Clothing for men in a Society Governed By Traditional Values And Standards?
Indian society, is a society of tradition values, a society that gives utmost importance to its cultural roots and sadly, much of our culture is rooted in conservatism. Pretty much like all other aspects of our society, fashion for men too, has been a victim of such conservative notions. The history of our society is such that our culture is a mix of many; the Arabs, the Persian and lately, on a very sub miniature level, the west. This deep rootedness in culture has given men certain standards to live up to, and one of those is clothing standards.
Men in India are supposedly heroes, brave and rigid, insensitive and carefree. Men in India are expected to be brave men rather than handsome men; beauty of such a man lies in his simplicity and stone heartedness. An ounce of sensitivity will put in question his masculinity.
Such too is true for fashion, a fashionable is a weak man, he is good looking yes, but he is not the standard of a ‘man’ he was supposed to be. Men’s fashion clothing has thus been limited by such notions. Designers will design male clothing’s for occasions where there could be a temporary exception to the rule and that’s where it all stops. Once the celebrations come to an end, men will go back to being ‘men’.
Men’s fashion in India has met with resistance due cultural influences that ordinary men are expected to honor. Fashion clothing makes a different statement in our society, polished decent wearing is equivalent to pride and mockery of that which is considered a norm. Simplicity is equivalent to morality and thus an opposition to fashion. Another aspect of such is the fact that most men see men’s fashion clothing as acceptance of western values, a rejection of our tradition, a rejection of kurta shalwar; our identity.
Most designers, when designing cloths for men, tend to redesign traditional cloths like sherwani or kurtas with embroidery, which is perceived as a feminine trait, other designers reinvent kurtas or sherwanis by pairing them with trousers. Such is perceived to be westernizing and hence rejected.
The opposition to change that which is normal is a trait our society has learned by default, and no matter what the designers design, the acceptance will come only for a certain occasion. Once past the occasion, the very change is perceived to be making a declaration against the norms.
Indian men’s fashion is far from being accepted by the masses. The masses are deeply rooted in tradition, in some cases the tradition is merged with religion, which is a ‘no go’ zone for most people. A change in such traditional aspects is perceived to be an act of rebellion against our values. In country where one can be killed for having an opinion, one can most certainly be killed for wearing an opinion, wearing clothing that may give an impression of liberty, style or self-gratification. Indian men are proud of being men, but never proud of being stylish men and unless this changes, India’s men’s fashion will remain an occasional event.