The Fashion System

By Roland Barthes, Matthew Ward (translator), Richard Howard (translator)

Book cover of The Fashion System

Book description

In his consideration of the language of the fashion magazine--the structural analysis of descriptions of women's clothing by writers about fashion--Barthes gives us a brief history of semiology. At the same time, he identifies economics as the underlying reason for the luxuriant prose of the fashion magazine: "Calculating, industrial society…

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Why read it?

1 author picked The Fashion System as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

Written by the great French semiotician, this book applies the semiotic method to symbolism of fashion.  People often say that fashion is like a language, but Barthes actually explains precisely how it symbolizes. He explains how fashion is a symbolic system that includes not only clothing itself, but also representations of clothing in text and image, fashion magazines, films, and other depictions that anchor the meaning of sartorial symbols.  

From Richard's list on how fashion shaped our history.

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