Never Judge A Book By Its Cover -
How People Communicate Through Their Clothes
The famous saying “never judge a book by its cover” sounds all well and good, however it is human nature to judge people by their image and we do it without realising it.
If you were to walk into a room of strangers, you would automatically presume certain aspects about a person’s upbringing, occupation or character, just by their image. Before any words have been exchanged you will have already categorised them against your preconceptions and this will inevitably alter the way in which you behave towards them.
Humans are the least biologically determined of all the species and therefore we have to be taught social skills, such as how to dress appropriately within our social groups. We learn and adopt the interests, values and beliefs of the social groups we are born into and therefore share the patterns of dress.
Although verbal communication is the most obvious way of expressing ourselves it is not the only way and has been proven to be the least effective. Body language, gestures and our image are a far stronger form of communication and therefore the way in which we dress plays a very important part in expressing ourselves to others. Our clothes signify our social identity and help us to understand the roles of others, the groups they belong to, their status within a group and society as a whole.
Everyone is born into and belongs to a group or groups, some through choice and some not. People who chose to belong to a particular group express this through their clothes communicating to others that they are committed and proud to be a part of that group.
Where we are born determines which national group we belong to and automatically contributes to our overall identity. Many countries have a traditional dress that tells others their nationality and expresses their values and way of life. This was particularly apparent in history...