Fashion and Everyday Life: New York
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Level: Undergraduate, Graduate
Division: Parsons The New School for Design
Department: Art/Design Hist & Theory
Course Number: PGHT 5501
Course Format: Seminar
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
  • Fashion Studies
Fashion and Everyday Life: New York This intensive course considers the ways in which fashion entered everyday lives in the United States in the 20th century, with a particular focus on New York - 'fashion' defined both as the visualization of the self within the fashion system, and as the ‘fashioning’ of the masses. It proposes that fashion offers the basic tools for creative self-identification and visual representation, which allows people from across the social spectrum to engage with the ‘aesthetic realm’. We will explore the ‘fashion system of the ordinary’ as existing alongside, but in distinction to high fashion. A key aim is to contribute to an understanding of a new middle ground in fashion that is not only in the salon and on the street, but also in the wardrobe. To achieve this, we utilize theories of everyday life as they have been articulated by social and cultural theorists including Simmel, Lefebvre, and de Certeau; these provide a lens through which to re-examine familiar and less familiar aspects of 20th century fashion. Comparisons will be made with other key international cities in order to highlight the particular social, racial and cultural diversity of New York City. With the focus on c1890 - 2010, the course content is theoretically framed by modernity and post modernity, by the acceleration and anxiety provoked by consumption, and by the global nature of fashion.
Course Open to: Degree Students
Course Pre/Co-requisites:
Open to: University graduate students.


Open to Graduate students.