Fashioning Brazil Cover Image

Fashioning Brazil

Globalization and the Representation of Brazilian Dress in National Geographic


Elizabeth Kutesko

978-1-3500-2662-9 (online)
978-1-3500-2659-9 (hardback)
978-1-3500-2660-5 (epdf)
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Examining the dynamics between subject, photographer, and viewer, Fashioning Brazil analyzes how Brazilians have appropriated and reinterpreted clothing influences from local and global cultures. Exploring the various ways in which Brazil has been fashioned by the pioneering scientific and educational magazine, National Geographic, the book encourages us to look beyond simplistic representations of exotic difference. Instead, it brings to light an extensive history of self-fashioning within Brazil, which has emerged through cross-cultural contact, slavery, and immigration.

Providing an in-depth examination of Brazilian dress and fashion practices as represented by the quasi-ethnographic gaze of National Geographic and National Geographic Brazil (the Portuguese language edition of the magazine, established in 2000), the book unpacks a series of case studies. Taking us from body paint to Lycra, via loincloths and bikinis, Kutesko frames her analysis within the historical, cultural, and political context of Latin American interactions with the United States.

Exploring how dress can be used to manipulate identity and disrupt expectations, Fashioning Brazil examines readers’ sensory engagements with an iconic magazine, and sheds new light on key debates concerning global dress and fashion.