Created By: Topazan on March 12, 2012 Last Edited By: Topazan on March 31, 2012

Official Uniform Plus Cultural Accessory

A character who wears a uniform as part of their job adds a religious or cultural item to it

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Trope
Subtrope of Custom Uniform.

The character wears a uniform. He may be a soldier, a policeman, or simply a school student. Although he may respect the organization to which he belongs, he also belongs to a religion or culture with a dress code of its own. As a compromise, he will wear his professional uniform plus one item representing his culture.

When this trope is used, it suggests that the army or other uniformed organization is both one that commands the loyalty of a diverse group of people, and that it's tolerant enough to make minor accommodations to the identity of cultural groups that form a minority of its members.

Possible launch titles: Badge Of Local Flavour, Cultural Uniform Variation, Cultural Custom Uniform

Examples

Live-Action Television
  • Starfleet was pretty accommodating towards this:
    • On \'\'Star Trek: The Original Series\'\':
      • Scotty occasionally wore a kilt with his dress uniform.
      • In the episode \"Is There in Truth No Beauty?\", Spock wears his Vulcan IDIC badge (which stands for \"Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations\") on his Starfleet uniform during a ceremonial dinner.
    • In \'\'Star Trek:The Next Generation\'\' Worf wears a Klingon sash/baldric and Ensign Ro has a Bajoran earring.
    • In Star Trek:Deep Space Nine, Nog wears a Ferenghi headdress after he joins Starfleet.
Literature
  • On the \'\'Discworld\'\', dwarfs serving in the Watch are permitted to carry a traditional axe in lieu of the standard issue longsword.
Theatre
  • In \'\'Henry V\'\', Fluellen wears a leek on his uniform as a symbol of Welsh pride.
Real Life
  • Many Real Life religions require their followers to wear certain items of clothing at all time. A member of such a religion who joins an organization that requires a uniform has to reconcile the requirements of their job or school with those of their faith. Some organizations are more accommodating in this regard than others.
  • It was common in the Continental Army, especially among backwoodsmen, to carry tomahawks on campaign as well as the generic musket and bayonet.
  • Several armies in the eighteenth century had uniforms that had local variations according to the where a unit was raised. This custom was maintained among the British and by extension the Indian army and to some extent exists today. Classic examples include kilts, bagpipes, etc(though that is no longer worn on campaign) for highlanders; and kukris (which are still taken on campaign because of their usefulness) for Gurkhas.
Community Feedback Replies: 28
  • March 12, 2012
    jatay3
    It was common in the Continental Army, especially among backwoodsmen to carry tomahawks on campaign as well as the generic musket and bayonet.
  • March 12, 2012
    Duncan
    In Henry V, Fluellen wears a leek on his uniform as a symbol of Welsh pride.
  • March 12, 2012
    Premonition45
    On Star Trek The Original Series, Scotty occasionally wore a kilt with his uniform.
  • March 12, 2012
    Unknown Troper
    Is this covered by Nonuniform Uniform?
  • March 12, 2012
    Topazan
    Don't think so. That seems to be about creatively interpreting ambiguities in uniform codes as an act of defiance. As far as I know, none of the characters mentioned in the examples so far hate the uniforms they wear, they just want to show pride in their cultural heritage in addition to the loyalty shown by their uniform.
  • March 12, 2012
    Duncan
    Here [1] are a few Real Life examples of schools with uniforms taking action against this.
  • March 13, 2012
    dalek955
    ^^^That or Custom Uniform.
  • March 13, 2012
    Arivne
    Yet another Star Trek example:

    Live Action TV
    • Star Trek
      • Star Trek The Original Series episode "Is There in Truth No Beauty?". During a ceremonial dinner Spock wears his Vulcan IDIC badge (which stands for "Infinite Diversity in Infinite Combinations") on his Starfleet uniform.
  • March 13, 2012
    AFP
    This would be a subtrope of either Custom Uniform or Non Uniform Uniform, but not the same trope exactly.
  • March 13, 2012
    AFP
    And it definitely needs a better title.
  • March 13, 2012
    Topazan
    ^^ I'd say it's a subtrope of Custom Uniform, but not so much Non Uniform Uniform. Unless the organization is hostile to the one's beliefs or culture, wearing a symbol of one's beliefs or culture is not an act of rebellion.

    ^ Yeah, the current one is a little long. If anyone has any ideas, let's hear them.

    I just realized that Custom Uniform is undergoing some trope repair. We'll have to remember not to launch this until that's sorted out.
  • March 13, 2012
    Topazan
    This probably needs a page image. How about something like this? Although, personally I'd prefer if we can find an image that's a little more subtle.
  • March 14, 2012
    Duncan
    Worf's sash was the first thing that came to my mind for this, perhaps he would make a good page image.
  • March 14, 2012
    SonofRojBlake
    Starfleet seemed pretty accommodating about things like this. Ro Laren always wore that chain-earring thing, Nog had that back-of-the-head-cover that some Ferengi seem to wear for some reason, and lists like this should always have a third example but I can't think of one right now.
  • March 14, 2012
    AFP
    This makes me think of Scottish soldiers, in a British uniform complete with kilt.
  • March 14, 2012
    Topazan
    ^ Is that a thing? Details?
  • March 14, 2012
    Aries
    • Fullmetal Jacket. Joker adds a peace sign and the contradicting message "BORN TO KILL" written on his helmet. According to him, it was suppose to reference the "duality of man." The Colonel wasn't amused.
  • March 14, 2012
    Topazan
    ^ Don't know about that one. That probably goes under one of the other Custom Uniform subtropes that are being discussed in the TRS
  • March 15, 2012
    Antigone3
    What about just calling this Uniform Plus?
  • March 16, 2012
    Topazan
    The might lead to confusion with some of the other Custom Uniform subtropes. Maybe Double Uniform? Because they're wearing the uniform of their culture as well?
  • March 16, 2012
    jatay3
    Several armies in the eighteenth century had uniforms that had local variations according to the where a unit was raised. This custom was maintained among the British and by extension the Indian army and to some extent exists today. Classic examples include kilts, bagpipes, etc(though that is no longer worn on campaign) for highlanders; and kukris (which are still taken on campaign because of their usefulness) for Gurkhas.
  • March 16, 2012
    TBeholder
    Badge Of Local Flavour? As in, you get the same hotel staff, only with extra marker, such as bagpipes to tell you you're in Scotland or balalaikas to tell you you're in Russia.
  • March 20, 2012
    Topazan
    ^ That could be worth exploring. To which hotel chain are you referring?
  • March 20, 2012
    pawsplay
    I would just call this Cultural Uniform Variation
  • March 26, 2012
    Topazan
    ^ I like that one. Is everyone ok with it?
  • March 26, 2012
    TBeholder
    ^^^ a widespread trend, i.e. abstract. Not limited to hotels at all. Or to Americans. In fact, just another side of "other peoples are just like (insert yours), only with (insert a hat)".
  • March 26, 2012
    AFP
    Just tossing this name suggestion out there: Cultural Custom Uniform.
  • March 31, 2012
    Topazan
    ^^ Hm, ok. I thought you meant there was a hotel chain where the uniform was the same in all countries except for the instruments.

    This could really use some more non-Star Trek examples.

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