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memri
November 21, 2008 No.
2122

Iranian TV Campaign Against Western Fashion In Iran

Iranians Should Look "Just Like This"

Title: "Loss of identity among the youth"

Interviewer (interviewing people on the street): "Can I ask you what your hairstyle and your look is called?"

Woman: "Fashion."

Interviewer: "What did you say?"

Woman: "Fashion."

Interviewer: "What do you mean by fashion?"

Woman: "It means something cool – a new and strange style."

Interviewer: "Why did you choose this style?"

Woman: "Everything has become strange. When life becomes strange so does fashion."

Interviewer: "How should Iranians look, in general?"

Woman: "Just like this."

Interviewer: "How are they supposed to dress?"

Woman: "In my view, people have different tastes. No two people are exactly the same. Just like no two fingers are the same, people's tastes are different. Some women like wearing chadors, some like traditional styles, and other like modern ones. It all depends on one's personality.

"For example, I studied architecture, and I work in graphic design, so I don't like run-of-the-mill things. I like to be different and unique. My drawing style is also modern, and I don't think it's important that I dress traditionally, or for Iranians, as a rule, to dress in a specific way.

"People dress in a certain way in Shiraz, and in a different way in Kurdistan, and in the north, they dress differently. In every country, there are many different styles. We are the only ones who like to dictate [how to dress] and say: Everybody must look like this."

Interviewer: "You don't think that your own style of dress is dictated by someone elsewhere?"

Woman: "No, I like this style myself."

"We See It Outside On The Street – And We See It On Fashion TV"

Interviewer (to another woman): "What style do you follow in your clothes, your hair, and your look?"

Woman: "To be honest, I like a style in which I feel comfortable – a casual style, I don't really like the old styles."

[...]

Interviewer (to young man): "Did you ever argue with your parents about your [hair] style?"

Man: "Yes."

Interviewer: "What came out of it?"

Man: "I talk to them and manage to convince them. For instance..."

Interviewer: "Do you convince them, or do they convince you?"

Man: "We talk, and..."

Interviewer: "Or do you just stop arguing, without either side convincing the other?"

Man: "That happens too.

[...]

"When we go to [the hairdresser], we are told this is the new style. This is the way it is. We live in a society that... When you look around you... I am in a profession that... When I see all my friends getting such hairstyles, for example, I can't just ask for a side part..."

[...]

Interviewer (to woman): "You don't even know what your style is called, do you? You have this style because other people are doing so, right?"

Woman: "It's in fashion today."

Interviewer: "How do you know when something is in fashion?"

Woman: "We see it outside, on the street, and we see it on Fashion TV."

Interviewer: "On the satellite channel?"

Woman: "Yes." [...]

"The Enemies of the Culture, History, and Faith of the Iranian People Began this Cultural Attack Many Years Ago"

Narrator: "The enemies of the culture, history, and faith of the Iranian people began this cultural attack many years ago. We, the Iranians, are missing the opportunity to fight this, and to inform the general public and our youth of this. Perhaps it is already too late, but preserving and protecting our culture and faith is our duty as Iranian Muslims."

[...]

Title: "Youth and Trendiness?!"

Interviewer: "Who bought you the shirt you are wearing?"

Young boy: "My mother."

Interviewer: "Is it a special style? Does it have a name?"

Young boy: "It's called guerr... 'military style.'"

Interviewer: "You mean 'guerilla style'?"

Young boy: "Yes."

Interviewer: "Why do you choose such a style for your son? Your son seems to be dressing according to your taste."

Boy's mother: "It's not exactly as he said. He chooses his clothes by himself. Today's children follow the dictates of fashion."

Interviewer: "To what extent do we Iranians impart our culture through our hairstyle and the way we dress?"

Mother: "Children see fashion styles in display windows, and they shop accordingly."

Interviewer: "So when they see somebody wearing such a shirt, they are encouraged to buy it?"

Mother: "That's about it."

Interviewer: "Don't you have any say in the matter?"

Mother: "It's no big deal – it's only clothes. All the kids his age dress this way. It's not an advertisement for anything – they wear it because it looks good, and besides, it's very good quality. For instance, he's been wearing this shirt for almost two years, and it is great quality." [...]

"This Is How Our Culture is Shaping Itself and is Returning [to What it Was]"

Interviewer: "Do you choose what to wear only according to external appearances?"

Another man: "I think that most people look at external appearances."

First man: "In general, people try to dress and look as nice as possible."

Third man: "As the saying goes: 'Do like the others, if you don't want to embarrass yourself.'"

Interviewer: "So that is what our society looks like?"

Third man: "Exactly, as far as I see at work."

Interviewer: "These people, who don't want to be embarrassed, live in Iran?"

Third man: "Yes."

Interviewer: "So to what extent are they Iranian?"

Third man: "I can tell you they are 100% Iranian."

Interviewer: "Even if they look that way?"

Third man: "Yes."

Interviewer: "Should this be our conclusion from this report?"

Third man: "This is how our culture is shaping itself and is returning [to what it was]."

Interviewer: "Do you mean our culture or the counter-culture that is attacking it? What education does such a hairdresser have, when he offers you a certain style, which you accept right away, merely because it is different?"

[...]

Title: "Fanatically following the dictates of fashion is a trap set up by the enemies of Islam and of the Revolution."