Fashioning Identity Status Ambivalence in Contemporary Fashion Cover Image

Fashioning Identity Status Ambivalence in Contemporary Fashion


Mackinney-Valentin Maria

978-1-4742-4913-3 (online)
978-1-4742-4910-2 (hardback)
978-1-4742-4912-6 (epdf)
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We dress to communicate who we are, or who we would like others to think we are, telling seductive fashion narratives through our adornment. Yet, today, fashion has been democratized through high-low collaborations, social media, and real-time fashion mediation, complicating the basic dynamic of identity displays, and creating tension between personal statements and social performances.

Fashioning Identity explores how this tension is performed through fashion production and consumption, by examining a diverse series of case studies - from ninety-year old fashion icons to the paradoxical rebellion in “normcore”, and from soccer jerseys in Kenya to heavy metal band T-shirts in Europe. Through these cases, the role of time, gender, age memory, novelty, copying, the body, and resistance are considered within the context of the contemporary fashion scene. Offering a fresh approach to the subject by readdressing Fred Davis’ seminal concept of “identity ambivalence” in Fashion, Culture, and Identity (1992), Mackinney-Valentin argues that we are in an epoch of “status ambivalence”, in which fashioning one’s own identity has become increasingly complicated.