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Exotic Narratives in Fashion: The Impact of Motifs of Exotica on Fashion Design and Fashionable Identities

Jennifer Craik

Source: Modern Fashion Traditions. Negotiating Tradition and Modernity through Fashion, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

In the context of exploring the prevalence of exotica in fashion, Jennifer Craik investigates the use of Indigenous Aboriginal motifs in Australian fashion and textiles. Furthermore, she argues that this occurs in a cyclical process of acclamation followed by renunciation coinciding with periodic displays of, and debates about, national identity. Increasingly, nationalism is being defined through the sophisticated blending of indigenous and ‘Australiana’ inspirations in colourful textiles, fashio

Beldi Sells: The Commodification of Moroccan Fashion

M. Angela Jansen

Source: Modern Fashion Traditions. Negotiating Tradition and Modernity through Fashion, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

Angela Jansen offers an analysis of contemporary Moroccan fashion known as beldi which has simultaneously achieved commercial success while promoting a new sense of national identity. The term, beldi, which means ‘traditional/local/authentic’ in Moroccan Arabic, encompasses both recognition as a brand as well as shorthand for the desire of Moroccan people for authenticity, craftsmanship and national glory. As such, beldi has been a success story as to how contemporary fashion can both reference t

Introduction

M. Angela Jansen and Jennifer Craik

Source: Modern Fashion Traditions. Negotiating Tradition and Modernity through Fashion, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

fashiondiscourselegacyAbby Lillethun, Linda Welters, and Joanne Eicher (2012: 76) argue in their article (Re)Defining Fashion that socialSocial socialDarwinismDarwinism, in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, is at the origin of the embedding of perceived ownershipownership of fashion in Western Europeancultureurbanculturewesterncultureculture. Social Darwinism’s paradigm, they argue, included a hierarchical construct of human typologies shaped by Westerners, which, therefore, positione

Introduction

Tereza Kuldova

Source: Luxury Indian Fashion. A Social Critique, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

White Lotus, the theme of the funeral that has transported us into the world of fashion designers and the South Delhi business elite, is a fitting metaphor for the key motif of this book. It is also a fitting metaphor for the ethnographic journey in which this work is grounded and for its analytical angle. Like the lotus, the beauties ritualof Indian fashion and heritage luxuryheritage luxury cannot be conceived without their juxtaposition, without the mud from which they grow and that brings the

Neo-Feudal Ornamentalism and Elitist Fantasies

Tereza Kuldova

Source: Luxury Indian Fashion. A Social Critique, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

The first chapter introduces the Indian fashion industry, the dominant neo-aristocratic aesthetics in contemporary luxury fashion design and the recent intensification of the business elites’ obsession with displays of opulent Indianness and their desire to master time and space through conspicous displays of status. It walks the reader through three key rituals. First, the interactions between designers and their clients in the studios, where they ‘celebrate Indianness’ together. Second, the fas

Producing Cosmopolitanism, Hierarchy and Social Cohesion

Tereza Kuldova

Source: Luxury Indian Fashion. A Social Critique, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

The second chapter develops the theme of imagined economy and India’s superpowerdom by focusing on the symptomatic commodification of past and heritage in fashion design. It does so by zooming onto the complex material and ideological production of traditional chikan embroidery from Lucknow, a city remembered for its past opulence, cosmopolitanism and luxurious lifestyle. It traces the movement of this embroidery, popular with India’s leading designers, from the local networks of its material pro

Design Genius and his Ghost Others

Tereza Kuldova

Source: Luxury Indian Fashion. A Social Critique, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

The third chapter turns to the tensed relations between design and craft. Developing further the case of chikan embroidery, as it moves from villages to fashion boutiques, the chapter analyses the ways in which material labour is artificially separated from immaterial labour. It shows how the designers’ narratives about creativity, innovation and artistic genius systematically push craftspeople into invisibility, inferiority and passivity, and deny their creativity, individuality and agency. The

Conclusion

Tereza Kuldova

Source: Luxury Indian Fashion. A Social Critique, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

The conclusion reviews the central points of the work, focusing especially on the power dynamics between the producers and designers, the poor and the rich, the rise of expert privilege and the logic of philanthrocapitalism as an instrument of power. It claims that the current philanthrocapitalism that has taken elite India by storm is deeply neo-feudal in its nature while being wrapped up in rhetoric of good intentions. As such it is a telling sign of the times of brutally rising socio-economic

Afterword: Fashion’s Fallacy

Sandra Niessen

Source: Modern Fashion Traditions. Negotiating Tradition and Modernity through Fashion, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

Employing a play on the term ‘Orientalism’, Sandra Niessen argues that fashion studies have been knee-capped by the lack of a sanguine theoretical lens that can dispassionately interrogate the fashion impulse. Instead, she argues, fashion theory has been co-opted by the assumptions and ideologies that underpin the phenomenon of fashion. Niessen argues that the dichotomy between fashion (= Western) and non-fashion (= Non-Western) is a ‘mystification’ and a ‘buy-in’. Rather, analysts should underst

Ottoman costume in the context of modern Turkish fashion design

Şakir Özüdoğru

Source: Modern Fashion Traditions. Negotiating Tradition and Modernity through Fashion, 2018, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

Reflecting the desire to achieve international recognition, Sakir Özüdoğru argues that Turkish designers have incorporated (traditional) Ottoman clothing elements in collections as a superficial commercial strategy, rather than a desire to reflect the socio-cultural values of a Turkey in transition. Instead, Özüdoğru suggests that Ottoman references are simply a source of visual inspiration within the context of western Orientalism. In contrast to exploring and unpacking Ottoman heritage as an a

Wearing the flag: Patriotism and Globalization

Barbara Brownie and Danny Graydon

Source: The Superhero Costume. Identity and disguise in fact and fiction, 2016, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

Captain AmericaCaptain America was created as a defender of the values of the United States of America. His appearance resembles those of Olympians, for whom national allegiance becomes the defining factor in the design of their uniforms. When they inject Steve Rogers with a serum to give him super-powers, the American secret service intend that his supernatural athleticismathleticism will be used in combat, on behalf of the US Army. He is dressed in a flag-like costume, and introduced to the wor

Conclusion

M. Angela Jansen

Source: Moroccan Fashion. Design, tradition and modernity, 2015, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

The main aim of this research has been to analyse Moroccan fashion as a materialization of social, cultural, political, economic and religious developments in Moroccan society, because until now Moroccan fashion has been predominantly studied as physical objects in which the materials and construction of the garments have been given primacy over their social and cultural meanings. Simultaneously, this research has aimed to contest prevailing misconceptions concerning traditional dress as being st

Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, Spring/Summer 1984

Veronica Maldonado

Source: Fashion Photography Archive, 2015, Fashion Photography Archive

Article

While most of de Castelbajac’s 1984 spring/summer contained serious and sensible clothes, the finale included a number of rectangular silk dresses screen-printed with images of household items such as US dollar bills, calculators, cigarette packs, and Warholian cans of Campbell’s soup. This was not the first time that de Castelbajac had shown these unconventionally shaped dresses—his previous collection had contained dresses emblazoned with internationally famous faces such as that of Charles de

Introduction: Indian Fashion

Arti Sandhu

Source: Indian Fashion. Tradition, Innovation, Style, 2015, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

While conducting research on the subject of fashion and dressdress it is not uncommon to come across significant variations in the way clothing terminology is applied and understood. Hence providing a framework of terms and definitions used throughout this book is a crucial starting point for this chapter. Outlining certain dress and fashion-related terms and their meanings, like costumecostume and traditional [dress], is also necessary as they have frequently been employed [historically] in acad

A Brief History of Dress, Difference and Fashion Change in India

Arti Sandhu

Source: Indian Fashion. Tradition, Innovation, Style, 2015, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

The assumption that the impetus for style change only came about during the presence of the British in India is largely untrue, as is the viewpoint that global interchange and fashion did not exist prior to the influence of contemporary forces of globalization. Indian clothing already included a diverse range of stitched and unstitched garments before European dress was introduced. Many of these had been fashioned by global interactions and local adaptations, stemming from the need to cater to In

Fashion Films, Blogs and E-Commerce: The Puzzle of Fashion Distinction in China

Simona Segre reinach

Source: Fashion Media. Past and Present, 2013, Berg Fashion Library

Book chapter

There once was a European who wanted a new suit. Since there were no European tailors in China, he called in a Chinese tailor and asked him if he was able to copy and sew a European suit. The tailor said he could make it up, if he provided him with a model. The European found an old, worn-out suit and gave it to him. After a few days the tailor brought the new suit. The European examined it and found it perfect. The only thing was that on the shoulders of the suit the tailor had made a hole, and

Uniforms

Nigel Arch

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

A uniform may be defined as a prescribed set of clothing peculiar to a distinct group of individuals within a society. It is distinguished by displays of hierarchy evident on parts of the dress and will usually also display emblems that act as signals only readily interpreted by other members of the group. Hierarchy is expressed in terms of rank, and badges of rank have appeared on such elements of uniform dress as the shoulder strap and cuffs of the upper body garment. Other symbols act as remin

Croatia: Urban Dress, Twentieth to Twenty-First Centuries

Maja Arčabić

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. East Europe, Russia, and the Caucasus, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

Croatia entered the twentieth century split up into several territorial units within the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Dalmatia and Istria belonged to the Austrian part, while Civil Croatia and Slavonia, as well as the city of Rijeka, were under the control of Budapest. The continuity of Croatia as a political entity in its own right was maintained by the parliament, or Sabor, which convened in Zagreb, the capital of Croatia and Slavonia, but lacked any significant authority. The border between the tw

Ideology and Ethnic Dress in Croatia

Aida Brenko

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. East Europe, Russia, and the Caucasus, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

Ethnic dress has been used for ideological and political purposes in Croatia from the mid-nineteenth century up through the early twenty-first century. In the course of history, individual communities have adopted clothes and clothing styles to differentiate themselves from others. Thanks to its distinctive features, dress has acted as an obvious symbol of identity. Only with the appearance of fashion and the acceptance of global fashion tendencies by elite groups from the mid-sixteenth century o

Sweden

Ulla Brück

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

Historically there are several indications of an urge to follow fashion in Sweden, although changes were slow. During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries medieval and Renaissance traits still dominated. In the eighteenth century, two-piece dresses for women and breeches and jackets for men became more common. Sweden has numerous varieties of provincial folk dress. Some consider these to be historic items, with strong local identification, while others see them as inventions of nineteenth-cent

Greenland

Cunera Buijs

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

The extremes of the Arctic climate set Greenland dress apart from dress in the rest of West Europe. It is made from the skins and furs of animals and birds and is highly adapted to the conditions and lifestyle of the Arctic people. Even so there are distinctive regional dress cultures of the West Greenlanders (Kilaamiut), Northwest Greenlanders (Inughuit), and East Greenlanders (Tunumiit). It was only in the twentieth century that the dress of Greenlanders began to be influenced by dress in the r

Norwegian Folk Dress in the United States

Carol Colburn

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

Emigration from Norway to the United States lasted for approximately one hundred years, from 1825 to 1925. Norway’s terrain provided only three percent arable land; for Norwegian immigrants, the fertile plains in America’s Midwest were an attractive destination. Few packed distinctively Norwegian clothing, knowing that following local styles would indicate their intention to blend in. However, Norwegian dress echoed among the Norwegian American population through continued contact between Norway

Latvia: Urban Dress

Tatjana Cvetkova and Edīte Parute

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. East Europe, Russia, and the Caucasus, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

Latvia is located at the crossroads of international trade routes and has suffered many foreign invasions. Urban fashion shows evidence of various nations that have ruled Latvia, and links with other nations have engendered a unique mix of elements, along with sensitivity to European novelties. From early times, simple, functional dress was important. This has always been embellished by ornaments and accessories. Although national details have sometimes diluted modern tendencies, urban culture ha

Ethnic (Folk) Dress in West Europe

Helen Bradley Foster

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

European nations embrace common notions about folk dress as a symbol of cultural identity. The exception is England, a country not credited with a tradition of folk dress. Although the populations of many countries on other continents likewise recognize their own traditions of national dress, none uses the term folk to define that dress. The term and the manner in which its meaning changes over time and place help locate historical ideas about West European ethnic (folk) dress within temporal and

Why Does the United Kingdom Not Have National Dress?

Alison L. Goodrum

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe, 2010, Berg Fashion Library

Encyclopedia entry

The United Kingdom (UK) is multinational, comprising Wales, Scotland, England (with these three forming Great Britain), and Northern Ireland. This alliance is a product of various constitutional reforms and Acts of Union, carried out and revised over several centuries. These ongoing revisions help explain the lack of UK national dress as the expression of a stable, collective identity. The UK is effectively a collection of nations, with their own identities and recognizable national dress. The un

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