Saturday, April 14, 2007

The evolution of Fashion dreads

Dreadlocks is the most obvious identifying feature of Rastafarianism.
Photo taken from:

The integration of fashion dreads within the movement

The Rastafari movement was established in the 1930s in what is often referred to as the 'slums' of Jamaica. It is primarily based on the main teachings of Marcus Garvey, who Rastafarians refer to as a prophet. His main ideology with regards to repatriation to Africa, is one of the primary features of the movement, with many Rastafarians looking forward to the day when they 'go back to Africa'. They call Africa the motherland and are ready to leave 'Babylon' (Jamaica) and the oppressive system. The movement is named after Ras Tafari who became Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia in the 1930s. He is seen as the king of the movement and is referred to as their living god.

While these ideologies are kept and practiced by many Rastafarians around the world, there are many persons who align with the movement because of its increasing fashion appeal. These persons are referred to as Fashion dreads, since they are more concerned with he fashion aspect of the movement.

The Rastafarian flag depicting the lion of judah.
Photo taken from:

The rastafarian colours of red, green and yellow, have been paraded on streetsides, in homes and on television, with many persons adorning themselves in attire that represents these colours. Not only that, but dreadlocks, which is also a main feature of the faith, has evolved considerably since the movement's formation in the 1930s. Many persons can be observed 'sporting' dreadlocks, some neatly groomed. Dreadlocks as a fashion statement has garnered significant support over the years, and many persons have caught on to this new fad.

While there is no doubt that there are genuine rastafarians who wear dreadlocks because of their belief in the faith and their obedience of the teachings of the movement, it cannot be denied that for many persons dreadlocks is nothing more than a fashion statement. A fad that is cool now, but will soon be done away with once the 'hype' dies down.
This blog therefore seeks to highlight the different dimensions of what the movement represents for most fashion dreads. That is, how fashion dreads use the rastafari symbols for their benefit.

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