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January 2022

Gender and hegemony in fashion magazines: Women's interpretations of fashion photographs

Journal/Book: Sociol Quart. 1999; 40: Journals Dept 2120 Berkeley Way, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA. Univ Calif Press. 541-563.

Abstract: Women's responses in the context of focus groups to fashion photographs and clothing advertisements in Vogue magazine and to a brief questionnaire eliciting their attitudes toward clothing and fashion are used to examine the nature and extent of hegemonic influences in fashion. Participants' sources of information about fashion suggest that the authority of the fashion press is limited. The magazine's conceptions of women's roles as expressed in its fashion photography fit a model of ''conflicted'' hegemony characteristic of American media and popular culture in general. Empowered by the cultural context of conflicted hegemony, women were generally critical of fashion photographs. Their responses to photographs were influenced by their acceptance of traditional norms of feminine demeanor but varied by age and race. They rejected the magazine's orientation toward the use of fashionable clothing for postmodernist role-playing in favor of a modernist outlook.

Note: Article Crane D, Univ Penn, Dept Sociol, Philadelphia,PA 19104 USA

Keyword(s): APPEARANCE


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