90986 - Global Fashion

Course Unit Page


This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.

Quality education Reduced inequalities

Academic Year 2020/2021

Learning outcomes

Global Fashion course investigates the material and immaterial dimensions of fashion as a major cultural industry that influence the individual and social identity on a global scale. Although controversial and much debated as a concept, the globalization of dress and fashion indicates an inseparable link between sartorial practice and cultural significance, as demonstrated in colonial and post-colonial practices, in the definition of “traditional” costumes as opposed to “modern” fashion, in the emerging aesthetics codes of young global designers, and in the fluid choices of consumers worldwide.

Course contents

Clothing is among the most visible and meaningful ways in which we express our identities. At the same time, our clothes are material items produced and consumed through an ever-expanding global fashion industry. This course will explore the various social, cultural, economic, political, and visual meanings associated with the representation of fashion , combining anthropological and historical methods.

The 2020 workshop Costume Meets Fashion with a focus on Indian dress is a joint project with Prof. Yuni Kawamura FIT New York class Cross-Cultural Studies.

During Class it will be shown the 2020 film THE WHEEL OF KHADI by Gaia Franchetti who will give a special talk on the film.


 This course adheres to the Identikit project which, developed in collaboration with the Savignano sul Rubicone Photography Festival (SI Fest), is aimed at celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2021


1. D. Miller and M. Banerjee (2008) The Sari. Bloomsbury London and New York.

2. L. Welters and A. Lillethun Fashion History. A Global View 'Introduction: Europe and the People without Fashion' Bloomsbury, London and New York, 2018, pp. 1-10.

3. D.N. Green and S. Kaiser "Fashion and appropriation" in Fashion, Style & Popular Culture, 4, 3, 2017

4. Wessie Ling, Mariella Lorusso, Simona Segre Reinach "Critical Studies in Global Fashion" https://zmj.unibo.it/issue/view/823

Reading (choose at least two of the following)

Rahul Ramagundam, Gandhi’s khadi. Chapter 1 only: Memories of a Moral Movement (pp.1-24), Orient Longman, New Delhi 2008.

Bhandari, V. (2019). "The Choli and the Empowerment of Indian Women" in A. Lynch & K. Medvedev (Eds.). Fashion, Agency, and Empowerment: Performing Agency, Following Script (pp. 143–154). London: Bloomsbury Visual Arts.

Hume, L. (2013). "India: Hindus, Holy Sadhus, Sikhs and Jains" in The Religious Life of Dress: Global Fashion and Faith (pp. 79–103). London: Bloomsbury Academic.

Kawlra, A. (2010). "The Sari" in J. Dhamija (Ed.). Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion: South Asia and Southeast Asia (pp. 115–128). Oxford: Bloomsbury Academic.

Sandhu, A. (2015). "A Brief History of Dress, Difference and Fashion Change in India" in Indian Fashion: Tradition, Innovation, Style (pp. 25–48). London: Bloomsbury Academic.

Shreen, K. (2015). "Dress and Textiles in Transition: The Sungudi Sari Revival of Tamilnadu, India" in Dress History: New Directions in Theory and Practice (pp. 195–208). London: Bloomsbury Academic.

Shukla, Pravina (2008), The Grace of Four Moons: Dress, Adornment, and the Art of the Body in Modern India, Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press.


Rupa Baiwa The Sari Shop.

Teaching methods

Lessons, Students presentations, workshops

Assessment methods

The examination will ensure the achievement of the following objectives:

- critical awareness of the complexity of the representation of fashion

- survey and analysis of the main conceptual contents examined;

- ability to establish well-founded relations between the different aspects of the program.


A. Attending Students only: COSTUME MEETS FASHION PROJECT.

Students will elaborate a personal interpretation of Indian Sari on the international stage, in collaboration with the students of Prof. Y. Kawamura (FIT Institute New York)

a.1 Indian Sari Individual Portfolio

a.2 Essay Test during the course on the preliminary readings indicated above.

The final grade is based on the average of the two tests, essay and portfolio

B. All other students written EXAM (Test)

Written Multiple Choice Test (31 questions) based on the following readings:

1. Bruzzi and Church-Gibson (eds) Fashion Culture Revisited: Theories, Explorations and Analysis. Introduction

2. Lise Skov and Marie Riegels Melchior: Research Approaches to the Study of Dress and Fashion

3. E. Wilson Adorned in Dreams: Introduction + chapter 4

4. D. Gilbert A new world order? Fashion and Its Capitals in the twenty-first century in Fashion Culture Revisited: Theories, Explorations and Analysis. Bruzzi and Church-Gibson. Routledge.

Teaching tools

Thematic introductions; classroom presentations by students; videos, open discussions on FB page created by the two classes attending students : FAST (Rimini) and FIT (New York)

Office hours

See the website of Simona Maria Segre Reinach