As early as the middle ages, dress code has been implemented as social identifiers, used to isolate and often humiliate "pariahs" of society. Originally cooked up by the Church to set prostitutes apart from society like lepers, it sought to ensure that respectable women were not mistaken for harlots.
Today, social identifiers take on different appearances, but we understand them all the same. Prisoners in orange pantsuits, or gang members in their color of allegiance, we recognize the signifiers. Can you think of a contemporary "marked" group that has adopted a colored garment as their own?
thanks to reader Cathryn for this idea!
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