José Cruz: Would you prefer a society where women aren’t uh dressing up and making up as they are now? Or would you- What would you prefer?
Charlotte Alderdice: Um I don’t (Personally?) I don’t think I would prefer it. I think I would prefer a society in which it was entirely a woman’s choice from a standpoint where she wouldn’t be judged if she chose not to. Um I think, I think- And I think, I think we should have a society where women should be free to wear or not wear makeup as should men. I think there’s too much of a stigma about men being too feminine. You know like if a man wants to wear a dress he can wear a dress, maybe he suits it. If a man wants to wear some makeup let him wear some makeup. Like, what’s the problem? If a woman can do it why can’t a man. You know like, I know that there’s- uh you know women are oppressed much more than men overall, but I think there’s quite a lot oflot of: Charlotte drops the “T” sound between these two words (0:46) double standards that work the other way as well and um, you know like- like in my school for example a girl could have her hair here if she wanted (Mm hmm) If it’s too long tie it back for safety reasons- like if you’re in science class, (Mm hmm) but if a boy had his hair longer than his collar he was told to cut it.
José: This is a high school?
Charlotte: Yeah. And it it was sort of like, why, why can the girls have long hair (Yeah) and (Yeah) the boys can’t? (Sure sure) And you know that sort of thing. And um and you knowsays this so quickly it’s hard to hear (1:13) I know some guys who are perfectly you know comfortable in themselves and if if you know you put them in a skirt or whateverwhatever: Charlotte drops the “T” sound in this word (1:20) they’d be having a whale of a time becausebecause: a pronounced, “KUHZ” (1:22) they’d be like, “Hey, I look great!” (Sure) It’s literally a piece of cloth. Um, I don’t I don’t really understand the problem with that.
José: You might have noticed this, I don’t know if you um spend any time around high schools or junior high schools in Japan, but um during the winter, (Mm) girls must wear skirts. (Yeah oh) That’s their uniform.
Charlotte: It was the same in my school.
José: And and like, poor things, I mean they must just be freezing sometimes. And the boys are are allowed to wear their pants. (Yeah) And some of these girls are probably thinking, “God, I’m freezing today!” Well I don’t know how did you feel about that at your school (Um) “Got topronounced, “GOTTA” (1:57) wear a skirt. (Well) You’re a girl!”
Charlotte: It was interesting at my school because, uh we- our school had it’s own nursery, primary school and secondary school. I just went to the secondary school. (OK) Um and the uniforms were slightly different. So in secondary school a girl’s uniform consisted of black shoes, black or navy tights, a kilt, uh- with- basically a skirt, a shirt, tie, a jumper if you want and a blazer. (Oh) The boys would be black shoes um grey trousers, I think it was- was it grey or black? I think it was grey. (But trousers) Yeah trousers, but the primary school, if you were a boy, if you were aged between five and about ten, you had to wear shorts (Huh OK) and socks that did not cover your knees, (Alright) all year and bear in mind that we’re in the North of Scotland (All year?) Yes, all year? (Little boys? Children?) Yes. This is like- That’s the kind of stuff my dad wore, back in the day when he was a kid. Um and you know once once you’re hereabout you know primary six so that’s maybe you’re like ten or 11 then you could wear trousers.
José: This is the North of Scotland. What do you do in the winter when there’s snow on the ground?
Charlotte: You get chapped knees. So for my school it worked both ways. And the girls in the junior school, now they could wear socks if they wanted to, but they could also wear tights, so come winter they could, if they chose, wear wooly tights. And yeah, (Yeah sure) it’s still cold, but it covers your knees at least.
José: It’s it’s- not like these girls. I mean, (Mm) uh wow! Well OK. That’s- When I see again in that situation for high school girls in Japan I feel bad for them, but also like what you just said about little boys, little uh (Yeah) elementary school boys having to wear shorts all the time…
Charlotte: These are like five year-old kids.
José: That’s the situation here.
Charlotte: Oh OK.
Are school uniforms a good idea?
What would you think if you saw a man wearing a woman’s dress?
What did your school uniform look like?
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José Domingo Cruz
Vancouver, British Columbia
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