April 21, 2014
I believe the reason Western Europe developed suits was the climate. They needed clothes to protect them from the unbelievable temperatures typically measure in negative degrees during winter. The fashionable suits of today really did evolve from a simple attempt to cover people from harsh weather. A similar case is the turbans used by the Arabs and now by many Africans. The desert winds of the Middle East carried a lot of dust and it only made sense to have a way of keeping the dust out of one’s hair and nostrils. Of course, most Arabs became Muslims during Muhammad’s conquests and now turbans are considered Islamic rather than Arabian clothing by most Africans.
Myles Monroe while talking about Colonization in his Kingdom Principles Series mentioned the far reaching impact of the Greeks and the English. Hellenization went so far that even when Rome took over the world, Greek culture and language were still popular across most nations of the known world. The English effort was so strong that the typical African considers it prestigious to wear a suit and tie on a daily basis at temperature reaching between 35 and 40 degrees centigrade. He then has to wait for the European who gave him the suit in the first place to invent a device which will keep him cool in his suit when he is resting at home, driving or working in the office.
Probably in the last decade or so some African countries became more self-aware and began addressing the decline of our cultures. Some countries have declared Friday as a say for traditional wear in the office. Great idea! But then what stops us from using Ankara and other African wears throughout the week or even having our traditional wears also declared acceptable formal wear for the middle class worker. I know this is true for government officials but I do not think there is anything stopping this from happening in our banks and multinationals. (on a lighter note maybe we can even save a little on power and foreign exchange! :)) What do you think?