(EN) (PDF) – The Language of Fashion | Roland Barthes


The principal aim of this book is to bring together in one publication those writings on clothes and fashion by Roland Barthes which have yet to be translated into English. If Barthes is known for The Fashion System (1967, English translation 1985), his seminal if complex treatise on fashion systems and on how fashion is ‘written’, it is perhaps less known that he wrote also on hippies, on jewellery, and extensively on methodological problems within clothes history. It was this gap in both Barthes scholarship and in Fashion Studies that encouraged Michael Carter to ask me to translate and edit these writings. We have decided, however, not to include in this volume two of Barthes’s writings on theatrical costume; we considered that his important piece on the excesses and iniquities of certain types of theatre-costume design exists already in English translation, in a slightly abridged version in Barthes’s Critical Essays (1972 [1964]), and that, although the original version (appearing in Théâtre Populaire in 1955) has witty commentaries on photographs of certain costume disasters, we did not want to confuse the volume with considerations on the theatre. The same applies to Barthes’s other (brief) essay on theatre costume, a 1955 review of Hélène Parmelin’s livre d’artiste covering five twentieth-century costume designers in France. Other pieces on fashion, other than The Fashion System itself, are indeed available in English and …

PDF file, 191 pages

via: rosswolfe.wordpress.com


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