Case Study Questions for the History of Fashion
Fashion is a style of dressing, locomotion and autonomy in a certain situation and at a certain time, of apparel, footwear, jewelry, makeup, hair style, body posture, and hairstyle. The word literally means a distinctive appearance defined by the fashion business as what is stylish. The diversity of a fashion style is represented not only by its clothes but also by its accessories. A fashion style can be popular because of its looks, its colors, its movements, its figures, its forms, its textures, its prints, its proportions, and its trends. There are fashion styles that are conventional, regional, or global.
The field of fashion studies attempts to understand the differential social meanings of fashion practices and the differential modes of representation of women in fashion. It attempts to provide an account of the construction of women’s identity and of the history of the self in terms of the history of fashion. In the field of fashion studies, the concepts of fashion and identity are interpreted as socially appropriate norms of appearance that vary according to individual characteristics. Fashion theories suggest that the concept of fashion is socially constructed, shaped by the cultural norms of a community and expressed through various modes of dress and accessories. It can be traced back to ancient societies and it is still present today in the lives of many women. It has helped explain the discrepancies between accepted and rejected fashion styles and the different perceptions of women about the same.
Fashion theories can be used in the research on women’s fashion in order to learn about the dynamics of change and emergence. The history of fashion can be studied from a number of perspectives, like gender, class, age, ethnicity, position, and power. This chapter provides a case study questions for the history of fashion, and the analysis of fashion and its social significance. This chapter will also help explain some of the features of women’s fashion such as the construction of separate identities within specific social and cultural contexts, the dynamic process of change, and the different styles that emerged. The use of this book in a course on the history of fashion can help students understand the relevance of the concepts of fashion and identity.