This minor addresses the cultural significance of fashion with reference to self-fashioning, embodiment, modernity, and globalization through the study of visual and material culture and written texts. Interpretation of fashion as visual and material culture enables students to gain a broad understanding and critical awareness of its meanings as objects, images, and cultural practices that position people in time and space. Introductory-level courses encourage a lifelong understanding of fashion, while upper-level courses offer more advanced and specialized knowledge.
The Fashion Studies minor requires successful completion of 18 credits across six subject areas, as outlined in the chart below.
Note: Course availability may vary from semester to semester. Some courses may be in development and offered at a later time. Students seeking to pursue alternative coursework to fulfill the minor should consult with their advisors.
A student who has completed this minor should be able to demonstrate:
- competence in thinking, speaking, and writing clearly and effectively, and communicating with precision, cogency, and rhetorical force.
- a strong knowledge of the tools and techniques of scholarship. Active research and the writing of analytical and critical essays should continue throughout the program.
- an understanding of the social, cultural, and global dimensions of fashion. An understanding of key issues and debates linked with fashion and its study.
- a strong knowledge of the evolution of changing perspectives on, and theories of, fashion and the dressed body in the 20th and early 21st century.
- understanding of the various research methodologies and practices used in fashion studies including ethnography and interviews, analysis of material and visual culture, archival materials. Introduction to the importance of primary sources for research and approach.
- understanding of the critical and informed awareness of fashion as a potential agent of change. An understanding of the relationship between fashion and gender, race, class, labor, sustainability, and ethics which are issues central to fashion studies.
- a strong knowledge of the multiple scholarly disciplines that have approached fashion and inform our understanding of fashion as its study. An understanding the relevance of fields related to fashion studies, i.e., art history, material culture, anthropology, and sociology.
- ability to competently articulate an informed understanding of the social, cultural, and global dimensions of fashion by analyzing fashion using a variety of methodological traditions, styles, and practices.
Minors are available to undergraduate students across The New School except those students at Lang and in the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students who are completing a self-designed BA or BS in Liberal Arts, who are not permitted to declare minors. For students at Lang or in the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students interested in pursuing a deeper study of this subject area, opportunities are available through the self-designed major in Liberal Arts. To explore this, contact an academic advisor or read more information about self-designed options for Lang or the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students.
For questions regarding this minor’s curriculum, including requests for course substitutions, please contact Rachel Lifter, Assistant Professor of Fashion Studies, at firstname.lastname@example.org.