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Hybrid Mixture Of Cultures



Taste is not neutral it always has consequences. This unit examines the concepts of taste and ethics and the connections between them by, for example, distinguishing between the specific practice of ‘ethical consumption’ as a means of tasteful distinction or as a medium for moral/political action and the wider ‘ethics of consumption’ in market societies. We begin by explaining a range of theories of taste across a variety of historical and cultural contexts and use these approaches to unpack the production of taste by cultural intermediaries working in fashion media and design and by fashionable consumers. Examining home decoration, furnishings, and contemporary art and design as well as fashion, you will explore why what’s bad taste or kitsch to one person, may be someone else’s prized possession. The unit then moves on to give you a critical overview of the concept of ethics and competing theories of what is ethical conduct in the context of the fashion industry. This conceptual framework will offer you the opportunity to deepen both your professional understanding and practical responses to a range of ethical and social concerns facing fashion - including issues of sustainability vis-à-vis slow and fast fashion, fair trade and ‘no sweat’ labels.


Upon successful completion of this unit you will be able to demonstrate:

  1. A critical awareness of debates concerning taste and the ethical dimensions of fashion (subject knowledge)
  2. An evaluative engagement with, and understanding of, the relevant academic literature (research)
  3. Critical and analytical skills (analysis)
  4. Research and writing skills: the ability to construct an argument, apply theoretical models as analytical tools, and to research and write an essay in an appropriate academic form (communication and presentation)

The assessment website provides a clear and simple overview of all the key course regulations for both staff and students and can be accessed here:


This unit is assessed holistically (100% of the unit).

• A 3000 word essay – see assessment and project brief section for details Assessment will be against the specified marking criteria.

BRIEFING DATE: Week 1 and assessment workshops – see scheme of work for details


3,000 word essay presented in academic format, including bibliography and references. Answer one of the following questions:

1) Taste is individual not social and a matter of agency not structure.

Discuss this statement with reference to relevant academic literature and in relation to specific examples drawn from fashion and/or wider culture both historical and contemporary.

2) Postmodernism means the end of the hierarchies, rules and boundaries of taste.

Do you agree? Discuss this statement with reference to relevant academic literature and in relation to specific examples drawn from fashion, art and/or wider culture both historical and contemporary.

3) Fashion can be both sustainable and ethical.

Discuss this statement with reference to the relevant academic literature and in relation to specific examples drawn from fashion and wider consumer culture.

4) Globalisation has positively transformed taste creating a world where fashion and identity have become an ever more diverse and hybrid mixture of shared cultures.

Is this statement correct? Discuss with reference to course academic literature and in relation to specific examples drawn from fashion and/ or wider consumer culture.


You are required to submit your submission online via TurnItIn. The TurnItIn submission drop box is located in the Moodle CHS course page in the section for the unit you are submitting to. Be careful to ensure that you are submitting to the correct TurnItIn drop box. Your file can be submitted as a Word (.doc/.docx) or PDF (.pdf) file no larger than 20mb.

This assessment will be submitted via an online submission platform called Turnitin UK. As part of the submission process, the University will utilise Turnitin UK to check the authenticity and originality of your work.

Submission cover sheet

You need to complete the CHS Submission Cover Sheet and add this as the first page of the file that you upload to TurnItIn. This cover sheet is available on Moodle along with instructions on how to add the document to the beginning of your assignment. The cover sheet includes a statement declaring that the work submitted is your own. Make sure to enter your name in the space provided in this section to show that you have read and agree with the statement.

3 Please note there is a required presentation style for essays:

Assessments should be presented on white/cream background, using a formal font (suggestions: Arial, Helvetica, Times New Roman; font size 11 or 12).

Lines must be double-spaced.


You should include the following statement:

“I, student’s name, certify that:

 this is an original and individual piece of work and that no part of this has been written by anyone else;

 I have acknowledged (appropriately referenced using the Harvard Referencing system) all sources and citations;

 No section of this essay has been plagiarised(*);

 This work has not been submitted for any other assessment.”

(*) Plagiarism forms part of Academic Misconduct.


You must acknowledge any external support that you have received during the research and writing/preparation of your assignment, including any proof reading or help with language outside of the UAL Student Support services. You do not need to acknowledge support from UAL Language Support; UAL Dyslexia / Disability Service; LCF Study Support and LCF Writer in Residence.

e.g. In the writing of this essay I have received assistance from...

Academic Misconduct


In order to facilitate your independent learning there is an extensive annotated weekly reading list below. Do not be intimidated by the size of this list, you are not expected to read all the suggested titles. Annotations are the notes after each title; these tell you exactly what each reading is about - this will assist you in identifying those which are most relevant to your interests (and chosen essay question). Many of the titles suggested are chapter length, not full books.


UAL Academic Affairs advises that the Harvard Referencing Style on the Cite Them Right Online website is used for all taught courses.

Cite Them Right Online is a referencing resource. It will help you to cite and reference just about any source and to avoid plagiarism. The site also allows you to create your own references by 4 copying the layout illustrated; you can then email the example to yourself or cut and paste it into a document.

On campus go to and you will be automatically logged on. To login off campus go to you will be asked to go via your home institution and then to log in with your University login and password.


This assessment will be submitted via an online submission platform called Turnitin UK. As part of the submission process, the University will utilise Turnitin UK to check the authenticity and originality of your work.

DATE: 9.12.15

TIME: 10:00 – 15:00 (GMT)


ESSENTIAL READING: This will vary according to the essay question chosen, and will be discussed in assessment workshops – see self directed study activities column in scheme of work for weekly suggested reading.

FURTHER READING – all texts marked ►are available in pdf version on the SDT Fashion Taste and Ethics Moodle site.

WEEK 1. Introduction: a framework for taste

Baudrillard, J. (2001) Selected Writings. (ed. Mark Poster). Oxford: Polity

►Bell, D. and Hollows, J. (2006) Ordinary Lifestyles: Popular Media, Consumption and Taste. Maidenhead: OUP - (Introduction)

Brooker, P. (2003) A Glossary of Cultural Theory. London: Arnold

►Bourdieu, P. (1984) Distinction: The Social Critique of the Judgement of Taste. London: Routledge - (Introduction)

►Campbell, C. 2004. “I shop therefore I am: the metaphysical basis of modern consumerism”, in Ekstrom, KM & Brembeck, H (eds.) Elusive Consumption. Oxford: Berg

Corrigan, P. (1997) The Sociology of Consumption: An Introduction. London: Sage Forty, A. (1995) Objects of Desire. London: Thames & Hudson

Graham, G. (1997) Philosophy of The Arts: An Introduction to Aesthetics. London: Routledge

Jenkins, R. (2002) Pierre Bourdieu. London: Routledge

Jones, P.L. (1991) Taste today: The role of appreciation in consumerism and design. Oxford: Pergamon

Körner, S. (1990) “Kant’s Theory of Aesthetic Taste”. London: Penguin

Milner, A. and Browitt, J. (1996) Contemporary Cultural Theory: An Introduction. London: Routledge

Webb, J., Schirato, T., & Danaher, G. (2002) Understanding Bourdieu. London: Sage ►Williams, R. (1976) Keywords. London: Fontana – (Taste entry)

WEEK 2. Taste Hierarchies: High culture and popular culture

Adorno, T. W. (2003) The Culture Industry: selected essays on mass culture. London: Routledge Barthes, R. (1990) The Fashion System. London: University of California Press 13

Breward, C. (1999) The Hidden Consumer. Manchester: Manchester University Press Byrde, P. (1979) The Male Image: Men’s Fashion in Britain 1300-1970. London: Batsford

Carre, J. (1994) The Crisis of courtesy: studies in the conduct-book in Britain, 1600-1900. Leiden: E.J. Brill

Chapman, S. (1994) ‘Innovating Entrepreneurs in the British Ready-Made Clothing Industry’. Textile History, vol. 24: 1

Crossick, G. & Haupt, H.G. (1995) The petite bourgeoisie in Europe, 1780-1914 : enterprise, family and independence. London: Routledge

Featherstone, M. (1991) Consumer culture and postmodernism. London: Sage

Fletcher, J. (1997) Violence and civilization: an introduction to the work of Norbert Elias. Cambridge: Polity Press

►Gans, H. (1999) Popular culture & high culture: an analysis and evaluation of taste. New York: Basic Books – (Chapter 2. ‘Popular Culture and High Culture’)

Hollander, A. (1994) Sex and suits. New York: Kodansha International

Rocamora, A. (2001) ‘High Fashion and Pop Fashion: The Symbolic Production of Fashion in Le Monde and The Guardian.’ Fashion Theory, Volume 5 (2): 123-142. Oxford: Berg

Rocamora, A. (2002) ‘Critical insights into Bourdieu’s sociology of culture.’ Journal of Consumer Culture, Volume 2, Number 3: 341-362

Storey, J. (2001) Cultural theory and popular culture: an introduction (3rd ed.) Harlow, Essex: Prentice Hall

Storey, J. (2003) Inventing Popular Culture. Oxford: Blackwell - (Chapter 3. Popular Culture as the ‘Other’ of High Culture)

Strinatti, D. (2004) An Introduction to Theories of Popular Culture (Revised Edition). London:Routledge

Tanner, J. (ed) (2003)The Sociology of Art: A Reader. London:Routledge

WEEK 3. Kitsch: taste, time and irony

►Binkley, S. (2000) ‘Kitsch as a repetitive system: a problem for the theory of taste hierarchy’ in Journal of Material Culture, Volume 5, No. 2, p131-152. Nb in COPYRIGHT FILE

Calinescu, M. (1987) Five Faces of Modernity: Modernism, Avant-Garde, Decadence, Kitsch, Postmodernism. Durham: Duke University Press

Douglas, M. and Isherwood, B. (1996) The World of Goods. New York: Routledge Eagleton, T. (1990) The Ideology of the Aesthetic. Oxford: Blackwell

14 Goodman, D.J. (2003) ‘Dream kitsch and the debris history’ Journal of Consumer Culture Volume 3 (1) 109-119

Olalquiaga, C. (2002) The Artificial Kingdom: On the Kitsch Experience. Minnesota: University of Minnesota Press

Sontag, S. (1994) “Notes on Camp” in Against Interpretation. London: Vintage Ward, P. (1991) Kitsch in sync: A consumer’s guide to bad taste. London: Plexus

WEEK 4. Tastemakers, cool hunters and fans

Fiske, J. (1989) a. Understanding the Popular. Boston: Unwin Hyman

Fiske, J. (1989) b. Reading The Popular. Boston: Unwin Hyman

Hills, M. (2002) Fan Cultures. London: Routledge.

►Gelder, K. and Thornton, S (eds). (1997) The Subcultures Reader. London: Routledge (Ch. "The social logic of subcultural capital")

Hebdige, D. (1979) Subculture: the meaning of style. London: Routledge

►Julier, G, (2008) The Culture of Design [Second Edition], London :Sage (Chapter 4. The Consumption of Design)

Klein, N. (2000) No Logo. London: Flamingo

Longhurst, B. (1995) Popular Music and Society. Cambridge: Polity Press

Lewis, L. (ed). (1992) The Adoring Audience: Fan Culture and Popular Media. London: Routledge

McRobbie, A. (1999) In the culture society: art, fashion and popular music. London: Routledge

Miller, J. (2011) Fashion and Music. Oxford: Berg

Muggleton, M. (1997) “The Post-subculturalist” in Redhead, S. (ed.) The Club Cultures Reader. Oxford: Blackwell Publishers

Osgerby. B. (2004.)Youth Media. Oxon: Routledge

Sandvoss, C. 2005. Fans: The Mirror of Consumption. Cambridge: Polity

►Thornton, S. (1997) “The social logic of subcultural capital” in Gelder, K. & Thornton, S. (eds.) The Subcultures Reader. London: Routledge

Turner, G. (2004), Understanding Celebrity, London: Sage.

Veblen, T. (1994) The theory of the leisure class. New York: Dover Publications

15 WEEK 5. A framework for ethics

Arnold, R. (2009) Fashion: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: OUP

Attfield, R.A. (2014) Environmental Ethics: An Overview for the Twenty-First Century (Second Edition). Cambridge: Polity

Blackledge, P. (2010) Marxism and Ethics. International Socialism Journal 120.

Curry, P. (2011) Ecological Ethics (Second Edition). Cambridge: Polity Press

►Jones, G. Cardinal, D. and Hayward, J. (2006) Moral Philosophy: a guide to ethical theory. London: Hodder Education – (Chapter 1. ‘Philosophy and Ethics’)

Mcgowan, K. (2007) Key Issues in Critical and Cultural Theory. London: OUP/ Mcgraw Hill Norman, R. (1998) The Moral Philosophers: An Introduction to Ethics. London: OUP Robinson, D and Groves, J.(1998) Philosophy For Beginners. London: Icon

Robinson, D. and Garratt, C. (1997) Introducing Ethics. London: Icon

Scruton, R. (1998) An Intelligent Person’s Guide to Modern Culture. London: Duckworth. Sennett, R. (2008) The Craftsman. London: Penguin

Tseelon, E. (ed). (2012) Critical Studies in Fashion and Beauty 2 (1-2) Ethical fashion special issue.

Young, I.M. (2003) ‘From guilt to solidarity: sweatshops and political responsibility, Dissent, Spring: 39-44

WEEK 6. Sustainability: ethical consumption and production

►Allwood, J. et al. (2006) Well Dressed? The Present and Future Sustainability of Clothing and Textiles in the United Kingdom. Cambridge: University of Cambridge Institute for Manufacturing

Almond, B. (ed) (1995) Introducing Applied Ethics. London:Blackwell

►Barnett, C. Cafaro, P. and Newholm, T. ‘Philosophy and Ethical Consumption’ in Harrison, R. Newhol, T. and Shaw, D. (eds). (2005) The Ethical Consumer. London:Sage - Chapter 1. Philosophy and Ethical Consumption)

Birkeland, J. (2002) Design For Sustainability: A Sourcebook Of Integrated Eco-logical Solutions. London: Earthscan

Clark, D. (2006)The Rough Guide to Ethical Living. London: Rough Guide/Penguin

►Claudio, L. (2007) Waste couture: environmental impact of the clothing industry in, Environmental Health Perspectives 115 (9)

16 Dickson, M. A., Laker, S, Eckman, M. (2009) Social responsibility in the global apparel industry. New York: Fairchild Books

Empson, M. (2014) Land and Labour: Marxism, Ecology and Human History. London: Bookmarks Fletcher, K. (2007) Sustainable Fashion and Textiles: Design Journeys. London: Earthscan

Fletcher, K. and Tham, M. (eds). (2014) Routledge Handbook of Sustainability and Fashion. London: Routledge

Foster, J.F. (2009) The Ecological Revolution: Making Peace with the Planet. Monthly Review Press: New York

►Gibson, C. Stanes, E. (2011) Is green the new black? Exploring ethical fashion consumption in Lewis, T. and Potter, E. (eds). Ethical Consumption: a Reader. London: Routledge

Harrison, R. Newholm, T. and Shaw, D. (eds) (2005) The Ethical Consumer. London: Sage

Hethorn, J. Ulasewicz, C. (eds). (2008) Sustainable fashion: Why now? A conversation about issues, practices, and possibilities. New York: Fairchild Books

Hepburn, S. J. (2013) In Patagonia (Clothing): a Complicated Greenness. In, Fashion Theory Vol. 17 No. 5

Hoskyns, T. E. (2014) Stitched Up: The Anti-Capitalist Book of Fashion, London: Pluto Press

Maslin, M. (2009) Global Warming: A Very Short Introduction. Oxford: OUP

Nicholls, A. and Opal, C. (2005) Fair Trade. London: Sage

Rivoli, P. (2005) The Travels of a T-shirt in the Global Economy: An Economist Examines the Markets, Power, and Politics of World Trade. New York: Wiley and Sons

Root, R. A. (ed). (2008) Fashion Theory 12 (4) Ecofashion special issue

Ross, A. (ed). (1997) No Sweat: Fashion, Free Trade and the Rights of Garment Workers. London: Verso

Sluiter, L. (2009) Clean Clothes: a Global Movement to End Sweat Shops. London: Pluto

Sullivan, A. (2015) Marx, Fashion and Capitalism in Rocamora, A and Smelik, A. (eds) Thinking Through Fashion: A Guide to Key Theorists. London: I.B. Tauris

Walker, S. (2006) Sustainable by Design: Explorations in Theory and Practice. London: James and James

WEEK 7. Celebrities: class and taste

Auslander, L. (1998) Taste and Power. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press

Bell, D. and Hollows, J. (2005) Ordinary lifestyles: Popular Media, Consumption and Taste. Maidenhead: OUP/McGraw Hill


Cashmore, E. (2006) Celebrity/Culture. Oxon: Routledge

Church Gibson, P. (2012) Fashion and Celebrity Culture. London: Berg

Evans, J. and Hesmondhalgh, D. (eds). (2005) Understanding Media: Inside Celebrity. Maidenhead and Milton Keynes: OUP

Ewen, S. (1988) The politics of style in contemporary culture. New York: Basic Books

Gronow, J. (1997) The sociology of taste. London: Routledge

Jones, O. (2011) Chavs: The Demonisation of the Working Class. London: Verso

►Lacey, J. (2002) ‘Social class: identifying characteristics of class in media texts,’ in Briggs, A. & Cobley, P. (eds.) Media: an introduction (2nd ed.) Harlow: Longman

Marshall, P. (2000) Celebrity and Power: Fame in Contemporary Culture. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press

Skeggs, B. (1997) Formations Of Class and Gender: Becoming Respectable, London: Sage Skeggs, B. and Wood, H. (eds). (2011) Reality Television and Class. London: BFI Books

Skeggs, B. and Wood, H. (eds). (2012) Reacting to Reality Television: Performance, Audience and Value. Oxford: Routledge

Sullivan, A. (2014), ‘“Working for the Few”: Fashion, class and our imagined future in The Hunger Games’, Film, Fashion & Consumption, 3: 3,

pp. 181–194

Taylor, L. (2008) A Taste for Gardening: Classed and Gendered Practices. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing.

Turner, G. (2004) Understanding Celebrity. London: Sage

Tyler, I. (2013) Revolting Subjects: Social Abjection and Resistance in Neoliberal Britain. London: Zed Books

WEEK 8. Gender and taste in post-war Britain

Butler, J. (1999) Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. New York: Routledge

Cranny- Francis, A. Waring, W. Stavropoulos, P. and Kirby, J. (eds). (2003) Gender Studies: Terms and Debates. Basingtoke: Palgrove Macmillan

Craik, J. (1994) The Face of Fashion. London: Routledge

Gauntlett, D. (2008) Media, Gender and Identity: An Introduction (Second Edition). Oxford: Routledge

Edwards, T. (2005) Cultures of Masculinity. London: Routledge


Entwistle, J. (2000) The Fashioned Body: Fashion, Dress and Modern Social Theory. Cambridge: Polity Press

Harris, A.(2004) All about the Girl: Culture, Power, and Identity. Oxford: Routledge

Hebdige, D. (1988) “Taste, nation and popular culture” in Hiding in the Light: On Images and Things. London: Routledge

Jensen, T. (2012) “Tough Love in Tough Times” in Studies in the Maternal, 4(2) 

Julier, G. (2008) The Culture of Design (2nd edition). London: Sage

Partington, A. (1995) ‘The Designer Housewife in the 1950s’ in Attfield, J. & Kirkham, P. (eds) A View from the Interior. London: Women’s Press

►Partington, A. (1992) ‘Popular Fashion and Working-Class Affluence’ in Ash, J. & Wilson, E. Chic Thrills. London: Pandora

Miller, D. 2008. Stuff. London: Polity

Moor, L. (2007) The Rise of Brands. London: Berg

Mort, F. (1996.) Cultures of Consumption: Masculinities and Social Space in Late Twentieth Century Britain. London: Routledge

Parr, M. (1992) Signs of the Times: a portrait of the nation’s tastes. Manchester: Cornerhouse Publications

Slater, D. (1997) Consumer Culture and Modernity. London: Polity

Sparke, P. (1995) As Long as it’s Pink: The Sexual Politics of Taste. London: Pandora

Sparke, P. (1987) Design in Context. London: Bloomsbury 745.2 SPA

Tyler, I. and Bennett, B. (2010), ‘Celebrity Chav: Fame, femininity and social class’, European Journal of Cultural Studies, 13: 3, pp. 375–93.

WEEK 9. Taste, ‘race’ and cultural difference

Bhachu, P. (2003) ‘Designing diasporic markets: Asian fashion entrepreneurs in London’ in Niessen, S., Leshkowich, M. & Jones, C. (eds.) Re-orienting fashion: the globalization of Asian dress. Oxford: Berg

Craik, J. (2009) Fashion The Key Concepts. Oxford: Berg

Giddens, A. (1999) ‘Globalisation: Runaway World'. BBC Reith Lecture 1. available at

Gilroy, P.(1995) The Black Atlantic: Modernity and Double-Consciousness. London: Verso

Hall, S. (1997) ‘The work of representation’ pp. 41-51 in Representation: Cultural Representation and Signifying Practices. London: Sage

19 Hebdige, D. (1987) Cut ‘N’ Mix: Culture, Identity and Caribbean Music. London: Comedia/Methuen

Hobson, J. (2005) Venus in the Dark: Blackness and Beauty in Popular Culture. London: Routledge

Kondo, D. (1997) About Face: Performing Race in Fashion and Theatre. New York: Routledge.

Lury, C. (1996) Consumer Culture Cambridge: Polity Press. (Chapter 6: Changing Races, Changing Places)

Maynard, M. (2004) Dress and Globalisation. Manchester University Press

McClintock, A. (1995) Imperial Leather: Race, Gender and Sexuality in the Colonial Contest. New York: Routledge

McMillan, M. (2003) ‘The “West Indian” front room in the African diaspora.’ Fashion Theory, Fashion and Orientalism special double issue, Volume 7, issue 3⁄4, p.397-414

Miller, D. (2001) Home possessions: material culture behind closed doors. Oxford: Berg

Root, D. (1996) Cannibal Culture: art, appropriation and the commodification of difference. Oxford, Boulder: Westview Press

Robins, K. (1997) ‘What in the Worlds Going On?’, in DuGay, P. ed. Production of Culture/Cultures of Production. London: Sage

Said, E. (1997) “Orientalism” in Gray, A. & McGuigan, S. (eds.) Studying Culture: an introductory reader (2nd Edition). London: Arnold

Sreberny-Mohammadi, A. (ed). (1997) Media in Global Context: A Reader. Oxford: Oxford University Press

Tobin, J. J. (ed). (1992) Re-made in Japan: everyday life and consumer taste in a changing society. New Haven: Yale University Press

►Tulloch, C. (1992) ‘Rebel without a Pause: Black Street Style and Black Designers’, in Ash, J. and.Wilson, E. (eds.) Chic Thrills: A fashion Reader, London:Pandora.

WEEK 10. Overview: Taste and its consequences today

Warde, A. (ed) (2008) Special Issue: Cultural Consumption, Classification and Power. Journal of Cultural Economy 12 (3).

Skeggs, B. (2000) Class, Self, Culture. London: Routledge

Wilkinson, R. and Pickett, K. (2009) The Spirit Level: Why Equality is Better for Everyone. London: Penguin


Title: Hybrid Mixture Of Cultures
Length: 11 pages (3025 Words)
Style: Havard


Hybrid mixture of cultures

Globalization is no longer a subject of debate. Social-cultural, economical, political as well as commercial structures are merging towards a global uniformity and taking up traceable similarities. Trends are building up all around the world. The previously defined boundaries and hierarchical structures of our societies are being eroded by the eminent power of globalization. Globalization and fashion do both have close similarities and are almost drivers of each other. They are immaterial goods but are influencing all other sectors of live and livelihood.


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