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Fashion and the orders of masking

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Fashion and the orders of masking

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Fashion and the orders of masking
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... As Austria began to mandate mask wearing in public spaces such as grocery stores, for example, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz noted that it would be a 'big adjustment', because 'masks are alien to our culture' (Norimitsu 2020). Associated with disguise and 'self-conscious […] artifice' (Tseëlon 2012), masks require a lot of rethinking in Euromodern philosophy and practice in order to become 'one with the body' (Tseëlon 1999). In posthumanist terms, the nature-culture and non-human-human continua need attention in a way that decentres individualist human impulses and needs. ...
... As Austria began to mandate mask wearing in public spaces such as grocery stores, for example, Chancellor Sebastian Kurz noted that it would be a 'big adjustment', because 'masks are alien to our culture' (Norimitsu 2020). Associated with disguise and 'self-conscious […] artifice' (Tseëlon 2012), masks require a lot of rethinking in Euromodern philosophy and practice in order to become 'one with the body' (Tseëlon 1999). In posthumanist terms, the nature-culture and non-human-human continua need attention in a way that decentres individualist human impulses and needs. ...
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After a concise survey of the state of the art on the semiotics of the mask and on studies in humanities and social sciences about medical face masks, the essay provides anecdotic evidence about differences in the semiotics of medical face masks in Europe and in the ‘Far East’, especially Japan, China, and Korea; it proposes a semiotic grid for decoding the phenomenology and meaning of the medical face mask; it concludes with some general observations on the change of the meaning of the face during the current pandemic.
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Melville’s visit to London in November of 1849 appears at the interstice between two materialist domains: that of dress as coded status and that of fashion as we know it today. This interstice will act as the conceptual, if not historical, crux of this article, which examines the framing of performative masculinity in Melville’s London journal entries. Melville’s self-consciousness regarding his wardrobe and his reception in London finds a parallel in The Confidence-Man, which explores the inauthenticity, or irregularity, of masculinity through the coding of dress. By focusing on the character of the Cosmopolitan—a “parti-hued,” trans-cultural dresser—I employ “transvestism” as a critical term to analyze the crossing of not only gender lines, but also of national, cultural, and social boundaries. Tracing the development of dress as trope and historical signifier from Melville’s journal to The Confidence-Man, this paper will culminate in a Melvillean theory of fashion that re-contextualizes his sense of material aesthetics in relation to an example from the twenty-first-century fashion scene.
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This article traces several interwoven traditions of considering waste and its materiality within fashion practice. Waste in fashion is commonly considered a problem to be solved, whether through reduced consumption, improved production processes, or recycling and upcycling practices. While the pragmatic and effective “waste management” approaches are key to developing a sustainable fashion industry they can also distance and obscure the materiality of waste, and in doing so overlook the potency and poignancy that waste can have. As a counter-approach to the problems of waste, this article explores a poetic element that relates to an aesthetic of the worn and wasted, and a fashion practice that elevates rather than disguises waste. This is discussed through a case study of experimental fashion label Maison Briz Vegas, reflecting on time, place and waste.
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