-Aiswarya G.K

Man and his perspectives of aesthetics keep on changing with every fragment of time. He finds beauty in things that makes him happy and lets him feel a difference. This link between man and his thoughts influence everything associated with him and the change which spreads in the society remains for over a period of time.

Man begins to find aesthetic relish everywhere in the universe.  In the earlier days, we adorned our vases with fresh, sweet-smelling flowers. Later, we began finding relish even in dry blossoms and leaves that we often thrown off in the past. This change in the aesthetic sensibility affects an individual’s vistas as well as the culture of a society.

This phenomenon of change is often a kind of chain bombardment. The trend can be a paradigm or radical shift from all existing trends and values. It can also be a gradual evolution from one idea to another. If there is a change in a particular area, it will eventually influence all the other areas. Changes occurring in one’s perspectives reflect his areas of interest and blend with other ideas as well.

Movements emerging in painting or arts, eventually gets adapted by literature, architecture, fashion and clothing. Finally it creates new waves of fashion in the society and the change that has come over in the aesthetic sensibility of man is very evident from them.

Man is capable of adapting to anything that he finds interesting, in order to lead the pack. Historical or socio- economic milieu may also trigger the change in aesthetic vistas and values.

An interesting thing that can easily be identified while critiquing past decades is that people have a tendency to accept certain trends or values that were completely deplored and rejected in the previous eras. Every era of people have their own clear- cut beauty concepts associated with gender and age group.

Women wearing pants and shirts were once considered awkward in southern India. People observed these outfits as quite masculine and that they tarnished women’s beauty or femininity.  Later, as women and men began sharing the same spheres of job and status, aesthetic convictions of the society began to change. Women found more comfort in wearing shirts and pants. This made them happy and added to providing them more confidence. Men also have adapted conventional women’s wear like kurties and sharvanies that resemble the salwars. All these adaptations and changes happen within the social backgrounds of women empowerment and movements of gender equalities.  Likewise new ideas and perspectives bring revolutionary changes in society.

Size zero women and musclemen are of less importance in the present world of fashion as compared to the age-old fashion beliefs. As society updates with new techno-scientific inventions and realizations, young minds update their sense and values. They have started to link beauty with mental and physical health of a person. This shift in perspectives brightens “natural beauty treatments and therapies”.  In fact, the term “natural’’ becomes a prefix of aesthetic sense recently. Beauty care products brought related terms in their ads in order to catch the attention of consumers.

Often racial peculiarities also operated to achieve universal oneness of aesthetic relish. Globalization and popular culture developed through mass media altered people’s views and convictions of aestheticism. Beauty concepts also changed beyond the cultural and geographical boundaries.  Features like lean lips, smooth shiny hair and fair complexion still top the beauty concepts. Enhancing number of cosmetic surgeries weigh the aesthetic consciousness of the society.  Adaptation of popular culture and life style of elite group also affects a generation’s style and sense.

Wearing only one anklet seemed shameful and senseless during early years. Still there are people, especially in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, considering it as something against the religious customs. To the contrary, today’s youth accept wearing single anklet as trendy and ‘freaky’, to put it in their own words.

‘Freak’ and ‘gentle’ are two terms which represent different aesthetic concepts relevant in the world.

While people belonging to the mid and late twentieth century eyed uncombed curly hair which in not cut properly as bad , people in the digital era adapts it as a part of the ‘freak culture’. Entry of neon coloured garments and accessories also echoes the change in aesthetic visions.

This change reflects everywhere in the society.  Aesthetic values change with age, gender and time and the mindset of people. Every new change remains as their signature over a period of time.





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