Course Number: JOUR-UA-204.002 (4 credits, no prerequisites)
Day & Time: Tue/Wed/Thurs, 4:00PM-6:00PM, Summer Session 1 (5/27-7/3)
Location: 20 Cooper Sq.
Instructor: William Van Meter
When writing about Marie Antoinette’s clothes, one isn’t just remarking on a surface facet. Her regalia was representative of the disconnect with the masses. Her final statement was switching from her patchwork black prison garb to a white dress to wear to the guillotine.
Fashion journalism can mean a lot more. In this case, a political cri de coeur. Fashion and style are integral to the magazine industry. This isn’t just the case for periodicals such as Vogue or Harper’s Bazaar. Newspapers such as The New York Times and Wall Street Journal have their own style magazines, and the New York Post has a fashion broadsheet. There are annual fashion issues for New York, Vanity Fair, New Yorker – not to mention the blogs.
Fashion isn’t just an art form (and one that is gaining acceptance), but is interwoven into everyone’s day-to-day life. Fashion is a window into culture. It is a barometer of the changing social mores. It can be a signifier of liberation such as “burn the bra” or the miniskirt. Or it can illustrate oppression, such as the constriction of a bustle and the shame of bearing one’s ankles. And high heels still fund a legion of podiatrists. Good fashion writing explores not only the broad connections to other realms, but also the depth and art of its creators.
This class will look at reviewing fashion shows, trend pieces, long-form features, and profiles. It will also delve into the fast-turnaround world of blogs and the Internet age that has changed fashion.
It will also deal with creating pitches and other real world concerns, such as interview techniques and navigating the pitfalls of having to deal with PRs. There will be guest speakers from different facets of the fashion industry, and a field trip to Fashion Week to review a show. With multimedia support.