Culture is represented in many ways from, language to dress to shoes from around the world. We can learn lots about an area by paying respectful attention to the people, the culture, the language, style of dress, and most importantly, by engaging each people in conversation. Traveling provides us with great opportunities to expand our knowledge and appreciation for the world around us. If that introductory knowledge begins with a brief perusal of shoes from around the world then great! Shoes are just an option to help you get started. Here is a little list of seven types of shoes from around the world.
Shoes from around the world have many differences as well as similarities and the United States especially. North America is home to a variety of cultures of the hundreds of American Indian tribes. Many tribes have intricate beadwork sewn onto animal hide. This beautiful beadwork is indicative of tribe and identity, point of pride, and hard work. Some moccasins are low top while others have leggings, and others still have no beadwork at all. All are different and wonderfully beautiful.
Like many cultures shoes are not worn inside the home; they are left outside the door. This practice is observed in Japan. A traditional style of footwear in Japan is the Geta. These shoes are made of a solid piece of wood with stilt like blocks on the bottom and a v-shaped strap on top. Getas are worn with modern and traditional clothing by people who occupy all levels of socioeconomic disposition. They are practical shoes, useful for keeping clothes from dragging on the ground and feet from touching garbage. The Getas have two distinct styles: round front for women and square front for men.
In Morocco a traditional shoe called Babouche is worn by many. Babouches are made of fine leather or high quality fabric. These shoes have no heels with the backs folded down, giving the slipper-like appearance. Babouches also have a pointed toe and exposed stitching. They look totally comfy.
If you travel to northern India or surrounding areas you may see a type of footwear called Jutti. These beauties are traditionally made of leather and covered with exquisite embroidery. They have a flat sole and, like the Moroccan Babouche, look like slippers. The Jutti are so pretty I would love to have a pair in every color. They look divine and very comfortable.
Have you ever seen any shoes as amazing as the Russian Lapti? Seriously, these look like works of folk art. The Lapti are traditional shoes of Russian peasants that are made of bast and not meant to last very long. While these shoes are amazing they are not worn very much anymore.
In Africa you would think the climate to not be conducive to wearing shoes. In many areas this is true and shoes are important symbols because of this. However, there is a variety of footwear ranging from leather and rawhide sandals to intricately beaded footwear of royalty.
The clog is a traditional footwear in France and other surrounding European countries. In France the clog, or Sabot, was worn between the sixteenth and nineteenth centuries by the lower classes. Sabots were carved from a single piece of wood and covered the whole foot from heel to toe.
There are so many other styles in addition to the ones here. Whether your interest is shoes, language, or religion, choose a starting point, something that interests you, to begin your journey. Do you know of any other interesting styles of shoes from around the world? Please share with us.
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