Kaustav Dey, the marketing lead for Tommy Hilfiger India and a fashion revolutionary who's always been interested in how the industry has impacted counterculture, delivered a talk on self-expression for TED.
Throughout the talk, he explains how he was inspired by fashion at an early age, and how it allowed him to express his identity in a new way. This enabled him to find confidence, as he learned that he was able to communicate the differences he was proud of to the world by dressing in a way that reflected his unique personality.
Dey continues his talk by examining the many different ways that people continue to be wrongfully judged for what they wear. He considers this my talking about the powerful women in his life, such as his grandmother, who was expected to wear only white after her husband had passed away. By taking away these kinds of freedoms through cultural expectations, women continue to be oppressed in ways that may seem small, but have a significant impact. These negative impacts are also felt by those in the trans community, who continue to be dehumanized and degraded for simply dressing in a way that reflects their identity.
With his powerful talk on self-expression, Dey shows how what people choose to wear can impact them in both positive and negative ways, however he notes the importance of refusing to conform, as "the injustices of today could become the ordinary of tomorrow" for the next generation of children.
The Power of Fashion Choices
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Holding Fashion Accountable
The Standardization of Beauty
The Benefits of Adaptive Clothing