Perspectives: Modesty on the Other Side
I’ve been in Korea for a while now. I love it, I’m making it my home, and I’m looking forward to the rest of my time here, however long it may be.
As I’ve grown up in a version of Chinese culture, the culture shock to me is not as great as it is to some of my fellow foreigners. There are still lots of ideas and habits here that are totally strange to me though.
Korea is a fairly conservative culture, thanks in most part, I think, to Confucian influence. However, if you look at their pop culture icons, or at the younger generation of children and adults, you’ll find tight clothing, sheer clothing, “artfully” ripped clothing, clothing that just has great “sexy” holes”, extremely short bottoms, you name it.
However: beware if you are a normal citizen (or alien resident) parading around in the streets in a sleeveless top! Or if, who could imagine, a top that fits your shape instead of draping around it!
I googled “Korean fashion” and found these two tops to be most representative of what I see out and about these days. Long and drapey with safely concealed shoulders and zero cleavage.
Actually, it’s getting a bit colder, so there’s also this going on:
Meanwhile, I’m stomping around with these risque tops that indicate the existence of breasts and shoulder skin (ooooh) and nice comfy jeans.
With the weather cooling down, I throw on a sweater or jacket too, which helps with the shoulder bit of appeasing society… but I still like to have some space around my neck to breathe comfortably. We’ll just have to wait for scarf weather to come around!