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Журнальный клуб Интелрос » Теория моды » №29, 2013


Dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of fashion from an academic perspective, the quarterly journal Fashion Theory: The Journal of Dress, Body & Culture views fashion as a cultural phenomenon, offering the reader a wide range of articles by leading Western and Russian spe­cialists, as well as classical texts on fashion theory. From the history of dress and design to body practices; from the work of well-known de­signers to issues around consumption in fashion; from beauty and the fashionable figure through the ages to fashion journalism, fashion and PR, fashion and city life, art and fashion, fashion and photography — Fashion Theory covers it all.

This issue's Dress section takes up the debate on school uniform. Yulia Demidenkoturns her attention to Children in Uniform. Lately Russia has been gripped by the desire to change clothes. With the army and police force already re-outfitted, schoolchildren are next in line. Yet another bill on the introduction of compulsory school uniform (in the form of amendments to the Russian Federation's Law on Education) is under consideration by the State Duma and will probably come into force from September, providing schoolchildren with three types of compulsory uniform — for special occasions, for everyday and for sports. The author analyses the public mood and the debate prompted by the bill, asking why this legislative initiative was first proposed and what it means, both in a historical perspective and for Russian society today.

Judy Park writes on Do School Uniforms Lead to Uniform Minds? School Uniforms and Appearance Restrictions in Korean Middle Schools and High Schools.

Although the people of Korea possess impressive skills and abilities and are making their mark in many different fields, they are not usually considered the most creative in a group. There may be different reasons for the rigidness or lack of creativity of Korea, but this article especially focuses on how school uniforms affect the creativity of Korean students. School uniforms are introduced for multiple reasons, including disci­pline, the elimination of class differences between peers, and better aca­demic performance. However, based on an examination of the history of uniform in Korean schools and the attitudes and habits of students in relation to their uniform, the article concludes that school uniforms and appearance restrictions do not improve grades, but deny students the expression of individuality and creativity.

Well-known Russian journalist Evgenia Pishchikova dedicates The Brown Dress to the present reintroduction in Russia of the school uniform, just a few years ago considered as much a relic of the past as the Soviet Union. Pishchikova sees nothing appealing in the new uniform designed by Vyacheslav Zaitsev: it conveys no feeling of communal identity, and the colours of the Russian flag on pullovers look like a safe choice. The proposed outfits (there are other collections, apart from Zaitsev's) with checked skirts and diamond-patterned sweaters, an alien and altogether characterless uniform, seems bereft of reverse perspective and history. They provoke no excitement and give no sense of communality.

This time around the Body section examines how costume and move­ment are closely intertwined.

Linden Hill's paper on Sex, Drugs, Rock V Roll, and the Joffrey Bal­let's Unitardsreveals that despite their central role in dance performance, costumes are frequently ignored in critical discussions of dance. Yet the costume a dancer wears significantly alters how the audience views the work. Clinging to and exposing the body shape, leotards are one of the most revealing types of dance costume. There is no excess fabric to dis­tract the viewer; the body is the costume. The conclusion comes from a larger study of leotards in mid-twentieth-century American dance, which also includes chapters on George Balanchine and Merce Cunningham. This article investigates how the Joffrey Ballet, a company that has been overshadowed in studies of mid-twentieth century dance, exemplified recurrent use of the leotard in performance. This costume choice not only coincided with contemporaneous fashion, but also contributed to a visual manifestation of 1960s American culture through ballet.

Judith Chazin-Bennahum devotes her article The Lure of Perfec­tion: Neoclassical Fashion and Ballet to the brief resurgence of interest in classical antiquity that began before the French Revolution in the 1780s, and ended after Napoleon's reign in 1815. This wasn't necessarily a new preoccupation with antiquity, which was established during the Renais­sance and later found particular recognition in the stunning theatre of Racine and Corneille during the era of Louis XIV. Radically different in the neoclassicism of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries was its expression in clothing, in feminine fashions, and in masculine and feminine costumes for the stage. Neoclassicism engendered a re­markable shift in the aesthetics of clothing. The female body assumed a new personality, it was reborn.

Nicoletta Misler, lecturer in the theory of contemporary Eastern Eu­ropean art at the L'Orientale University in Naples, looks at the develop­ment of modern dance in Russia from the 1910s to 1930s in her article Costume, Body, Movement: The History of Costume. Inception and End of the New Dance. She affirms that the radical changes in ballet were facilitated by alterations in costume, which, in turn, were engendered by the radical views of celebrated dancers, artists and choreographers. In particular, the most radical transformation occurred after the classical tutu vanished from the ballet stage to make way for the tunic, for mus­lin, or simply the naked body.

In Foxtrot and Fashion in Soviet Russia Irina Sirotkina focuses on the topos of the 'roaring Twenties' — music halls, bars and cabarets. This was the scene of a fusion between salon dances and professional choreography, stage costume and fashion in the broader sense. Most of these establishments offered not only performances by actors, but also dances for the general public. Clothing and dance fashions shifted from the stage to the dancehall and back again: actors and choreographers created numbers on the basis of ballroom dancing — the tango, foxtrot and Charleston, while the public borrowed steps and figures from the dancers, often copying their costumes as well. The year 1923 marked an apogee in jazz and the fashions that accompanied jazz dances: the Mos­cow Music Hall began performing at the Akvarium Winter Theatre, and the first fashion house in Soviet Russia was founded — the Fashion At­elier that published the magazine Atelye. The one issue produced was outstanding, featuring articles by theatre director Nikolai Evreinov and poet Mikhail Kuzmin, fashion designs sketched by Vera Mukhina and Alexandra Ekster and photographs of actresses and models in sump­tuous outfits. In the late 1920s the foxtrot and other jazz dances were banned in public places. Fashion, including dance attire, grew more conservative, with longer skirts, heavier footwear and collars that con­cealed decollete. Foxtrot and the corresponding fashions in clothing were nonetheless absorbed into the culture of mature Stalinism, rather than vanishing altogether.

In the Culture section Hiroshi Narumi's article Street Style and its Meaning in Postwar Japan aims to analyse the meaning of Japanese youth subculture in the postwar period, looking at both the styles and locations in which they appeared. The subject is approached through a semiotic analysis comparing Japanese and British subcultures. Consid­ering the geographic distance and cultural difference, it is surprising to find that British and Japanese subcultures share a common system of semiotic meaning. We examine five Japanese subcultures: Roppongi- zoku, Miyukizoku, Harajuku-zoku, Futen-zoku, and Boso-zoku. Each of these tribes, or zoku, can be classified according to the moment of their appearance and to sartorial similarities with British subcultures. The Roppongi-zoku, Miyuki-zoku, and Harajuku-zoku were typified by a similar authentic code close to that of the Mods; the Futen-zoku corre­sponded to the Hippies and the Boso-zoku had a semiotic equilibrium with Punk subculture.

As we shall discover, features of subcultural style in Japan appear to conform to the notion of 'subcultural bricolage'. Though not every aspect of British cultural theory can be directly applied to subculture in Japan, the theoretical framework that defines subcultural style as a signifying practice and symbolic struggle is appropriate. The framework will be reconsidered in the course of our investigation.

In The Myth of Street Style Sophie Woodward examines how the phrase 'street style' is used in multiple instances, ranging from magazines, exhibitions, blogs and academic texts to popular parlance, and how its association with quirky individuality arises from its own mythologized and popularized histories. The article enquires into the current myth of street style and its relationship to everyday practices of assemblage. It is based on an ongoing mass fashion observation (MFO) of young people in Nottingham that aims, through photographs and interviews, to identify the various style groupings and how they change over time. By taking the approach of documenting street style as an everyday practice, this article makes a case for considering 'street style' not solely in terms of the histories of street style, but also through fashion magazines, clothing sold on the high street, localized style groupings, and how individuals assem­ble their own outfits. The article points to a shift in street style towards subtly differentiated style groupings that incorporate mainstream, high street fashions. In looking at how styles change over time, it also chal­lenges the use of 'fast fashion' in relation to the purchasing and wearing of clothes, as this conceals the complexities of practice.

In Museum Business section Christopher Breward in his article Between the Museum and the Academy: Fashion Research and its Constituencies takes a personal perspective on the shifting relationship be­tween fashion research generated in the British higher education sector and in the museum context over the past ten years. It identifies the im­pact of new interdisciplinary approaches and funding opportunities and argues for the positive benefits of collaboration between the two profes­sional fields The article reflects on the author's experience of working on three distinct exhibition projects at different styles of institution and indicates how the curatorial process enriches and is enriched by a refle­xive understanding of research.

This issue's Books section includes When the Theory of Fashion Be­came Classic byAlexander Markov, a review of I. Loschek's When Clo­thes Become Fashion: Design and Innovation Systems (Oxford; N.Y.: Berg, 2009. viii, 245 pp., ill.).

Andrei Zavadsky presents Graceful and Nothing Superfluous, an analysis of Grace: A Memoir by G. Coddington (Sindbad, 2013. 416 pp.).

Jana Melkumova-Reynolds' Fashioning Models is a review of Fa­shioning Models: Image, Text and Industry, edited by J. Entwistle and E. Wissinger (London: Berg Publishers, 2012. 240 pp.).

Alexey Mokrousov presents Around Djagilev, a review of S. Scheijen. Sergej Diaghilev: Een leven voor de kunst (M.: KoLibri; Azbuka-Attikus, 2013. 608 pp.) and Leon Bakst. My soul is open. In 2 vols. (M.: Iskusstvo-XXI century, 2012).

In the Events section, Maria Khachaturiyan's Carnival of Fashion Monsters: Between Transgression and Avant-Garde' gives her take on 'Arrrgh. Monstres de Mode' at the Gaite Lyrique in Paris, 13 Febru­ary — 7 April 2013.

Maria Khachaturiyan also presents Go Hatless and Get Scalped, her impressions of the 'Cheveux Cheris, Frivolites et Trophees' exhibition at the Musee du Quai Branly, Paris, 18 September 2012 — 14 July 2013.

Andrei Zavadsky contributes Galloping After Salopes, his thoughts on 'Fashion in the Mirror of History. 19th-20th cc.' at the Moscow Museum's Proviantskiye Sklady, 17 May — 8 October 2013.

Bella Neiman explores The Legacy of Mariano Fortuny y Madrazo after viewing the exhibition 'Fortuny y Madrazo: An Artistic Legacy at the Queen Sofia Spanish Institute in New York, 30 November 2012 — 30 March 2013.

Bella Neiman's Punk: the Future of the Generation 'Without A Fu­ture' covers 'Punk: Chaos to Couture' at New York's Metropolitan Mu­seum, 9 May — 14 August 2013.

Tatiana Karateeva writes on A Future Full of the Past, impressions of the exhibition 'Fibre Futures: Japan's Textile Pioneers' at the Helsinki Design Museum, 1 February — 5 May 2013.

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№28, 2013№29, 2013№30, 2013-2014№31, 2014№32, 2014№33, 2014№34, 2014-2015№20, 2011№27, 2013№26 ,2013№25, 2012№24, 2012№23, 2012№22, 2011-2012№21, 2011
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