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What are you wearing?! Clothing is among the most visible and meaningful ways in which we project ourselves into the world and express our identities. At the same time, our clothes are material items produced, marketed, and consumed through an increasingly powerful global fashion industry. This course will explore the various social, cultural, economic, political, and personal meanings associated with fashion, shopping, and advertising in American history. Combining historical methods, social theory, visual and material culture, fieldwork assignments, and visits from fashion professionals, we will focus on such questions as: What role does fashion play in the construction of different American identities? How has clothing been used to differentiate people, in both positive and negative ways? Why are fashion, shopping, and consumption seen as primarily feminine concerns? What role has clothing played in American political and cultural resistance movements? What do particular fashion trends tell us about changing cultural values and tastes? Course includes some background in social theory about fashion and consumption and case studies focusing on such topics as early department stores, fashion art advertising, anti-fashion, street style and fashion blogging, American feminists' critiques of the fashion and beauty industry. Particular attention will be paid to the relationship between consumption of fashion and gender, race, ethnicity, class, and sexuality. Priority registration for AMCS majors. This course satisfies the fieldwork requirement for majors.
Course Attributes: EN S; BU BA; BU IS; AS SSC; FA SSC; AR SSC

Section 01

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