Reader's Guide

"1. For a week, keep a clothing journal. Each day after you dress, write down your feelings about what you are wearing and why you are wearing it. If you experience negative emotions, try to imagine what needs to change for you to feel more positive.

"2. With those closest to you, including friends and family, discuss where you learned what appropriate dress is. Evaluate whether or not those messages are life-giving.

"3. Reflect on how you feel about being vulnerable and needing others. Then consider whether your dress embraces vulnerability or works to mask it.

"4. On any given day, begin to imagine your clothing as a form of autobiography. Explore what your clothing communicates about you and your expectations of others.

"5. Try to recall the first time you thought of the difference between masculine and feminine clothing. Discuss whether those memories are pleasant or unpleasant.

"6. Think about the connection between your clothes and animals. What ethical obligation do Christians have with regard to choosing what they wear with attentiveness to how animals were used in the production of their clothing?

"7. In this book, dress is not limited to shirts, pants, and jackets, but rather encompasses body modification practices such as plastic surgery, weight training, piercing, and tattooing. How does including these practices in a definition of dress influence how you think about what you wear and why you wear it?

"8. Think of the messages or 'hand-me-downs' we pass on to our loved ones about what is normal and natural in terms of clothing. Which of these hand-me-downs are life-giving for you, and which are death-dealing?

"9. Look at the labels on your clothing. What do they tell you about how your clothes are made? Would your patterns of dress change if you knew more about the people and production process behind the label? Why or why not?

"10. Theorists suggest that nakedness is a form of dress. What do they mean by this, and do you agree with such an argument? Why or why not?

"11. For Christians, risking personal safety so that others can feel safe is part of Jesus' message. What does it mean to risk personal safety in terms of dress? How does one begin to 'get naked' with Jesus?

"12. Are there fads in consumer culture that resonate with the Christian call to live in service for others? If so, are these fads truly spiritual, or are they just schemes to get the public to buy more stuff? How do we know?"