Modesty in different cultures

Identity by Design, tradition, change, and celebration in native women’s dresses is published by the Smithsonian and HarperCollins. Edited by Emil Her Many Horses, it is lavishly illustrated and contains thoughtful essays, mostly by native American scholars, about dress. The perspective goes from historical times to the present.

I was fascinated that the metal ornaments which jingle have a social purpose (not just decorative). Women are not supposed to be alone with certain males, such as their father-in-law. The noise is to alert men that a woman is coming. In Islam, unrelated men and women are not supposed to be along together, but women are admonished not to stamp their feet and make their jewelry jingle.

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