In order to stimulate and encourage a broad and inclusive discussion on decolonizing fashion, the Research Collective for Decolonizing Fashion (RCDF) started a blog on their website in September this year, featuring contributions from fashion academics, curators, professionals and practitioners as well as general people with an opinion on the topic. The aim is to publish a blog post every week within a specific theme, which changes every three months, that readers can comment on and engage with in a respectful and open-minded way.
After the initial theme ‘What does decolonizing mean to you?’, we are now welcoming submissions for our next theme, (Re)ThinkingFashion Globalization, which will run from December 2018 to February 2019. The theme coincides with our seminar (Re)Thinking Fashion Globalization, co-organized with The Transboundary Fashion Seminar at Bunka Gakuen University in Tokyo, which will take place on 15-16 February 2019. We hope that the blog will function as a virtual extension of the seminar to include voices of those who cannot participate in person.
Fashion globalization too often continues to perpetuate Eurocentric biases in fashion description and fact on a wider geographical stage. Too often it refers to European fashion trends being adopted by the rest of the world due to processes of globalization, and generally ignores the large diversity of fashion systems around the globe in their own right, with their own histories and global connections.
Many fashion histories have remained largely undocumented, outside of global fashion histories, or framed as traditional, ethnic and/or unchanging; that is, stereotyped and stigmatized as non-fashion.This has meant that the social, political, historical and contextual ‘global’ narratives of these ‘other’ fashion histories have been excluded from global fashion discourses.
Some fashion systems—perceived of as outside the dominant global fashion city networks—have recently earned their rights to join a global fashion discourse, mainly due to socio-economic changes that have created a convergence with the West, and/or through their successful engagement with fashion as both consumers and producers. We aim to contest that fashion has suddenly emerged in these regions in the past few decades as the result of globalization and the growth of new middle classes and argue that fashion is of all places of all times.
Consistent with its goals, the RCDF strives to be inclusive and welcomes submissions from academics, curators, designers and industry professionals who are creatively and critically involved in fashion systems everywhere in the world. We invite submissions from any discipline and perspective that help to rethink fashion globalization and aim to explore processes of de-globalization. The submission can simply be a short paragraph acknowledging certain debates or issues or it could be a longer piece (max 1500 words) on how (re)thinking fashion globalization is related to your research or practice. Submissions can be in the format of a text, photo-series or anything related to your practice.
The deadline for submissions is 7th January 2019 and can be sent by email (preferably in a word format) to firstname.lastname@example.org