Chapter : 5. Clothing : A Social History

Transformation In Colonial India

During the colonial period there were significant changes in male and female clothing in India. This was a consequence of the influence of Western dress forms and missionary activity and due to the effort by Indians to fashion clothing styles that embodied and indigenous tradition symbols of ;the national movement. When western-style clothing came into India in the nineteenth century, Indians reacted in three different ways:
(i) There was a section of society to women Western clothes were a sign, of modernity and process. They adopted these dresses, There was another section of society, who found western style clothing as symbolic of liberation, Among these the important ones were the dalits who had converted to Christianity,
(ii) Another group of people were convinced that western culture would lead to a loss of traditional cultural identity, These people kept away from western clothes,
(iii) Another group of people began to wear western clothes without giving up their Indians ones, They would wear western style clothes when out on work, and would to back to more comfortable Indian clothes when relaxing at home,
A. Caste Conflict and Dress Change:
B. British Rule and Dress Codes:

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