The Uniformity of Uniform

When did the last time you wear uniform ? In high school ? For several time, we used to wear uniform, since kindergarten (blue-white), primary school (white-red), junior high school (white-blue), senior high school (white-grey). We have to wear those kind of uniforms because that’s what we have to. Do you know why ? Have you ever asked your parent, teacher, headmaster, why student should wear uniform ? Maybe the answer is because you’ll look neat, good looking, uniformity with the group.

I remember, on primary school, I had lots of uniforms. Monday (white-red), Tuesday (white-white), Wednesday (brown-brown skirt), Thursday and Friday (yellow-green), and Saturday (brown-brown long pants). Waw, and also scout, sport, and tapak suci uniform. It means one uniform for one day. That’s because I learned at private school so they had authority to make their own rule. I remember, if my uniform wasn’t prepared well, so I lost my uniform for that day, and I’ve been so upset. Because I’ve looked different with my friends and that’s made me feel bad! And also, my teacher would asked me the reason why I wear different uniform, and they said, ‘Next week, you should wear the uniform, Ok?’…

Uniform. Uniformity. That’s the idea of uniform, to make uniformity among group and build an identity, that you are part of something. The other is other. Another reason is to highlighting you  from other group. If I used the postmo point of view, uniform make you lost your own desire and your own identity. Who are you ? You just like a puppet to be seen from everywhere by everyone. You are the corps/organization where you were taking a part. Uniform can be an oppressed tools that you should obey. The regime/the authority who give/make uniform has a power to make you behave as they want. You could see it on Dharma Wanita, Korpri, police, civil servant, military, and other corps.

On the wedding, we prepare uniform for parents, brothers and sisters, cousins, uncles, aunty, grandma, and all the commitee that took part. If you calculate, those uniforms takes alot. The reason for this uniform is because it used to, it’s a habit. So the guest will know who are the family member of the bride and groom. And also, you all would look great and neat on photo J. Because we need to buy textile in big amount, so we need a plan about what color, how many metres, how many people, what’s for sisters, for aunts, etc etc, and that’s so annoying (according to me).

Since I married and moved to this place, where we were part of husband’s work, I have kinds of  uniform. I found that uniform become part of appearence. Your uniform informed that you are part/member of certain elite group. Uniform is also common identity built by organization to make you looked as part of something. You look different compared with other who don’t have. Yes, because there were uniforms for this, for that, for that, etc.  And, uniform can be the objective of the organization. Because we worked on something, we got profit on it, and we could buy uniform for all the member. People looks happy wearing uniform because it means new clothes and we can wear it when we have a special guess.

I feel, with those kinds of uniform that I have since kidergarten until now, I was created to behave and think like common people. Or I can say that the authority wanted us to do, to think, to act as  what they wanted and we almost forgot who we are. The outer/group identity is bigger than individual/our own identity. That’s why non government organization want to break all kinds of uniformity and act/do as they believe.

And here I am now.  I want to think on another side of something. I always ask ‘Why, why, and why?’ the question that people don’t even think about.

This is the note I always remember from my brother in law (you should check it out) :

Great people talk about ideas

Average people talk about things

Small people talk about other people



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