Your third assignment takes the form of essay in which you are asked to showcase the degree to which a single object (in this instance a piece of dress or an accessory), can provide a vehicle through which to engage with wider themes and theoretical debates. Your essay should be based around the close study of an image, garment, accessory or textiles of your choice from any date between c.1400 and c.2020. It might be a personal photograph, a piece from your personal wardrobe, or an object owned by a member of your family. Alternatively, you might prefer to select a photograph from a recent fashion shoot, a portrait from an art gallery, or an image from a museum/archive. You could also choose a garment or textile in a museum collection, or a piece from a contemporary designer.
Using your chosen object as your starting point, your essay must explore one of the themes we have considered in class in more depth. Potential themes include the relationship between: Fashion & Power, Fashion & the Body, Fashion & Identity, Fashion & Politics, Fashion & Art, Fashion & Work and Fashion & Masculinity.
Your discussion can have a historical focus, or engage with more contemporary themes, but must be rooted in fashion or dress. Whether looking to the past, present or future, you will need to reflect on the historical, social and cultural context within which your object was created. You will also be expected to draw on relevant methodologies and critical theories in your analysis.