ART 302: Reading #3

Fashion, a Strategy of Desire: A Roundtable Discussion by Roland Barthes

Fashion is more than just designing clothes and fashion shows. Fashion has become one of the most innovative industries ever since major manufacturing begun. It is seen as an industry where the new gets old fast, where trends come and go, whether its a small modification of the current trend or a drastic change.  Women are inclined to follow the trends and to dress themselves accordingly. Fashion and history as well as surrounding have always had an environmental effect on fashion. Upon reading this discussion, I picked up a couple of questions that I asked myself throughout the reading.

  • Do men designers have a tendency to dress women in an appropriate manner or do they truly do it to “disfigure” women, based upon the doubt of one of the philosophers? Or do men designers have a wider sense of “freedom” when it comes to designing, in comparison to women designers?
  • If fashion is influenced by social surroundings, in what way do they tie into them? Is there a benefit to the “surrounding” by creating a garment influenced by it?
  • How is fashion correlated with “narcissism” and “erotic values”? Do we tend to dress ourselves in a vain way? Or do we dress ourselves with an erotic state of mind?

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