Cultural References

Schoolgirl Uniforms
Japanese Living

Almost all Japanese junior highs and high schools require students to wear a uniform. Many Japanese students feel the uniforms provide them with a sense of unity, but often say they would rather be able to express themselves more. Conformity is often stressed in Japanese society, and the uniform helps with this process. Most students view the uniform as a necessary evil... Kagome's school uniform may seem somewhat short or provacative by Western standards, but this is how many school girl uniforms look nowadays in Japan. Below you will find an image of each school girl from Ms. Takahashi's previous works, and you will be able to compare the changes in school dress beginning in the early 1980s through the late 1990s.

Early 1980s
As you can see Lum from Urusei Yatsura is wearing a style that would probably be most similar to what Westerners are familar with the "sailor" style uniform. The dress is fairly long, extending below her knees. The dress is blue, like many are used to seeing, and is somewhat similar to Akane's uniform.

Mid 1980s
Ibuki Yagami from Maison Ikkoku wear's a darker grey uniform, and, rather than the "bow" that is found on Kagome and Lum's uniforms, wears a necktie. Her socks are tight fitting as well, a trend that will soon change.

Late 1980s - Early 1990s
Akane Tendo of Ranma continues the long dress fad, wearing a long-sleeve blouse (short sleeves in warm weather), with a light blue slipover dress. The slipover is the same as Ibuki's mid-80's uniform.

Late 1990s
Kagome Higurashi of Inuyasha has a much, much shorter skirt, and goes back to an outfit more similar to Lum's with the "bow" and and shoulder cover. Kagome also has very trendy loose socks, which became popular in Japan in the 1990s.

An Introduction to Inuyasha