We tend to think of clothing as a covering, as a thing meant to hide what is underneath, but that isn't the only way to view clothing. In many ways, their design and intent functions to focus allure on that which isn't in view. It is a value adding process which makes the hidden parts more than what they would be if out in the open.
I am in no way an expert on cultures who wear burkas, but it is my understanding that (at least theoretically) they aren't meant just to hide the body, they are meant to elevate the body to a secret treasure that will then be shared with someone who is special (i.e. a husband).
I think with cultures who wear burkas there is a larger issue of politics and control involved than there is with a pastie, but I'd still say they are very similar. Both are meant to conceal a special part and to heighten the allure of that special part according to cultural notions of what is considered special. They are just different sizes.