Monday, June 1, 2015

Privacy and Separateness

Recently there was a news item about girls in a high school protesting because some of the clothing they wore was considered by the school staff to be too revealing.

This started me thinking about how different standards of clothing are now from what they were for my generation and I am wondering if it is related to the vastly different view young people have now of privacy and the self.

I grew up in a small Ontario town in the 1950's and certainly many of the outfits I see women wearing on the streets now (and it still seems to be women's clothing that people fuss about, not men's, even 60 years later) would have resulted in social ostracism if not actual charges for indecency.  Seriously, the world has changed that much.

But I've been wondering if in this new world of texting and constant contact with others via the internet and cell phones people's sense of themselves as separate from others hasn't fundamentally changed.  Certainly people share thoughts and plans and photos with vast numbers of friends and strangers that my generation might, might, have shared with one very close friend or family member.
And I wonder if at least part of the reason people are comfortable revealing so much more of their body (whether it be exposed flesh or just form-fitting clothing)  is that they just don't have the same sense of separateness from others and the same desire for privacy in their day to day life.

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