| March 7th, 2018
Gender Fluidity: Breaking Barriers?
By| Javon Cohen
Gender Fluidity got its first wake up call when it was introduced in fashion industry that caused a shift toward a gender-fluid society. But how does this conception trickle down to becoming the norm on a college campus and its influences on how people chooses to dress. Is Gender fluidity something that society should taboo or do people have the right to make their own decisions.
With fashion designers such as Grace Jones, Thom Browne, Alessandro Michele, Marc Jacobs, Shayne Oliver, putting men in skirts, women in tuxedos, and making unisex clothing the trend embraces the notion of gender fluidity, or a more flexible range of gender expression.
But how do notions of the fashion trickle down to people who identify as gender fluid? And how does that influence the way someone dresses and the opinions and attitude it leaves on a society. The answer and views might not be what you expect but it does take a step in the right direction filled with tolerance, acceptance and diversity.
According to Urban Dictionary, “Gender Fluid is a gender identity best described as a dynamic mix of boy and girl. A person who is Gender Fluid may always feel like a mix of the two traditional genders, but may feel more boy some days, and more girl other days.
Being Gender Fluid has nothing to do with which set of genitalia one has, nor their sexual orientation.”
The way a person dresses can say a lot about them but doesn’t capture their entire identity and personality. Likewise, non-binary people may be leading the charge in confronting fashion’s gender conventions, but their styles are not the end of what it means to be gender fluid. This active reversal of the many ways in which gender roles are forced on us but have grown from generations of people struggling to be recognized and self-defined, despite what others might think.
Now more than ever in the media, we see a storm of individuals testing the waters and becoming the social norm by wearing clothing typically utilized by the other gender. Jaden Smith has recently made his way onto an ad for Louis Vuitton’s womenswear, pictured in a skirt. Actions like this could be a move in the direction to break barriers between society and gender Fluidity.
“I do believe as far as fashion goes it is becoming very androgynous and we aren’t even noticing it, it’s more acceptable to wear somethings that our parents would question growing up,” Said Zeff Manneus, a freshman at Florida A&M University.
“Those traits can be very subtle for us because we’re used to it. But fashion has been inspired by a majority of powerful fashion moguls that are also part of the LGBTQ community and a lot of them are gender fluid,” said Manneus.
Jasmine West, a Junior at Florida State University sees gender fluidity first hand, where there’s a Hispanic man that dresses in woman clothes on one day and male clothes on the next.
“I believe that as the fashion industry involves, so does our society because the LGBTQ community is forever growing and becoming the social norm that people are going to have to come to terms with,”said West.
Bryanna Dunning, Graduate student at Florida A&M University said, “Gender fluidity shouldn’t be feared or cause an epidemic, everyone has their own rights to be comfortable in their own skin.”
Homophobia isn’t the problem; the problems lies in the way society views the LGBTQ community instead of coming to understanding and walking a mile in their shoes.
Gender fluidity is a result of the freedom of expression to choose their own clothing. In essence, their expression is just another form of art! It should not be bound by traditional gender roles. The taboo that certain genders are confined to wear or not wear various types of clothing or makeup should be removed. We all like to feel free, confident, comfortable, and ourselves. As a society, we should not feel limited in our options! All genders should be able to wear their clothes without shame or the approval from society.