Punishment outfit

A 'bad bunny' punishment suit

A punishment outfit is a way of dressing that is used and reserved for punishment.

As psychological punishmentEdit

Most punishment outfits work via shame and humiliation and are thus a form of psychological punishment. The dunce cap is a classic example.

Such a punishment outfit might be a specific item that would not otherwise be unusual save for it has been set aside for this purpose—like a pair of red shorts—or it could be clothes they might not otherwise voluntarily wear. This first effect is the wearer knows that they are wearing it as a punishment so it becomes a symbol of their shame. If the meaning of the outfit is not obvious then there is worry others might ask why they are wearing the item, this becomes especially in the case of minors who are still growing, as the item might be kept past the normal replacement stage, making the question more likely.

The punishment outfit can also have special meanings, such as red shorts or skirt to symbolize an impending spanking.

A person can also be made to wear clothing of the opposite gender for punishment (as in petticoat punishment), and/or clothing that belongs to a younger age group, e.g. an adult being put in schoolchild outfit, or a 13-year-old being put in schoolwear of an 8-year-old. This approach taken to an extreme is diaper discipline, i.e. putting a person in diapers for shame and punishment.

As corporal punishmentEdit

Other types of punishment clothing is designed to be uncomfortable, such as hairshirts and sackcloth. Another option is to stuff stinging nettles into a person's underwear. Fictional examples include pain-ties and bee-riefs.

Also in this category is spanking clothing, i.e. clothing designed to be worn prior to, during, or after a spanking.

At schoolEdit

The best known examples of punishment outfits used in schools are the donkey and the dunce cap. These shame the wearer by symbolizing the lack of desired traits like intelligence.

Other examples are special vests. At Seng Kang Secondary School in Singapore, offending girls must wear a "red vest" for a given number of days in circumstances where boys would receive a caning, since girls may not receive corporal punishment in Singapore schools. At Hong Kah Secondary School girls who arrive at after the start of curriculum hours must wear a "corrective vest" for the day, while boys receive two strokes of the cane.

Put back in shortsEdit

Back in the dormitory she had laid out our clothes for the day. I was aghast at mine - a white shirt - with a soft collar and puffy sleeves and velvet tie - black velvet side button shorts, those flimsy pants - silk I later discovered - and long white stockings with patent leather sandal type shoes. (...) "If I find you cannot wear these clothes tidily and cleanly I shall put you in little girls' clothes not a little boy's. When you have shown you can behave like an older boy you will be allowed to dress like one."
  The Old Rectory, chapter 2

At some British schools in the past where the normal uniform for boys included long trousers, one form of punishment was to make an offending student wear short trousers for a period as though they were much younger boys. This punishment would not work in Britain nowadays, where shorts no longer have that connotation and indeed where if anything the demand by pupils is to be able to wear (casual) shorts (in summer) when they are not permitted. But it is sometimes used in the present day in Singapore, where at most secondary schools boys go from shorts uniform to longs at the start of Secondary 3 (normally the year in which they turn 15). Schools recently using this form of discipline include Pasir Ris Secondary School and occasionally Presbyterian High School. These are both co-educational schools and it works as a deterrent because boys of 16 or 17 find it very embarrassing to have to be seen, especially by girls in the same school whom they may be trying to impress, in lower-secondary uniform after being in "adult" longs for perhaps two years. At Pasir Ris the students undergoing this regime are known as "the short pants people".

Likewise, the "Student dress code" page of East View Secondary School's website states that on a third or subsequent "attire offence", male upper secondary students are made to wear short trousers uniform for a week instead of the "straight-cut long pants" that are their normal uniform.

See alsoEdit