Ow and why do we express our personal identity through the clothes we wear?
Issues/questions to be addressed
What is identity?
How identity derived? (What sources included?)
Is identity reinforced or redefined by everyday choices?
Is brand help us project who you are or more importantly who you want to be?
>Clothing as Communication.
Clothing as a silent language of signs.
Fashion & clothing as ways in which people can differentiate themselves as individuals.
Globalization makes us need to personalize and searching for with personal value to make us feel more like ourselves or how we want to be.
Clothing signs are associated with the expected behaviors of society and reflect the value of mainstream culture. (the identity we can show through clothing is our personal identity or merely a surface identity, e.g. our job, lifestyle, age, wealth and gender)
Brands & Brand values are a way to feel the product as part of their own personalities.
Branding is the process of attaching a name or reputation to something or someone.
Why people buy branded clothes? (Only for the guarantee of quality?)
>Expressing a Personal Identity of Individuality
Global brands cannot give us a personal identity of individuality.
How can we achieve this individuality of sense of self-identity through clothing?
What type of analysis do you intend to use? These may be combined provided you are able to present a clear rationale for doing so. Historical, sociological, semiotic, psychological, feminist, Marxist, multiculturalist, postcolonial, genre, popular culture etc and give the names of specific theorists of particular relevance.
Primary Sources of Information
To include libraries, galleries, addresses of key contacts/sources, interviews, exhibitions, archives, collections, interviewees, case studies.
Case Study: How can we express our personality through T-shirts?
>Wearing a T-shirt is the simplest, cheapest and easiest way to make a statement visually about your state of mind
>A brief history of T-shirt
>The most direct from of communication through clothing is message T-shirt (T-shirt printed with statements)
>T-shirt that show our interests directly are also a good way of expressing out identity
Books/Articles/Resources already located
1. Barnard, M. (1996) Fashion as Communication, London, Routledge
2. Brydon and Neisson (1998) Consuming Fashion, Oxford
3. Craik, J. (1993) The face of fashion: Culture studies in fashion, London, Routledge
4. Morgan, C.L. (1999) Logos: logo, identity, brand, culture, Rotovision, Switzerland
5. Mortished, C. (2002) The art of turning brand identity into market success, The Times, 07/01/2002, p22
6. Sarup, M. (1996) Identity, culture and the Postmodern world, Edinburgh University Press Ltd
Ensure that you define all terms clearly, and with regard to changing conceptions of the meaning of terms such as: identity, fashion, globalisation, branding–the meaning of such terms needs to be understood in relation to the context in which they are used (and which you are using).
Think about methods of circumscription (alone, identity and fashion are broad, vague terms). It might be the case that you decide to look at issues of gender, race, age, business practices, or subcultures, design, power or branding. Through all of these things relate, allowing one or more to surface will ensure that your study has clearer boundaries.
Name Names, introduce the work of designersbe specific at all time. One of your tasks will be to link theoretical perspectives (sometimes from outside your main area of study) to various visualizations (clothing, images of clothing etc). How can you gauge the effects of clothing? What are you intending to look for? It might be an idea to conduct interviews, develop questionnaires or endeavour to undertake a larger case study directed towards an area of your choosing.
What role dose colour, line, tone, pattern etc play in determining meaning? You could look at the work of Roland Barthes and Unberto Eco (semioticians), comparing and contrasting cultural signifiers. This might take the form of an examination of notions of beauty (aesthetics) in relation to power and gender ( Kant, Foucault, Mulvey and gaze theory).
Again, you need to be more specific when considering which methodologies might be most useful. Do you intend to focus on branding, advertising and mechanisms of marketing, production and distribution? Here, Marxist and Neo-Marxist critiques of capitalism would be helpful. If you wish to direct your research towards the impact that clothing has on the individual, a more psychoanalytical and aesthic analysis would be more appropriate. Alternate conceptions of fetishism ( Marx and Freud) would be usefel in either case–why do we feelcertain things (in response to fashion)? Why are the key drivers of desire? How does clothing carry meaning?
Expand your bibliography to include a broader range of theorists, including some of the thinkers named above.