Timeout: Why We Need to Re-think The Narrative of Fashion | Benjamin Wild | TEDxRoyal Holloway

Timeout: Why We Need to Re-think The Narrative of Fashion | Benjamin Wild | TEDxRoyal Holloway

Fashion Industry's Stories and Societal Change

  • The fashion industry has faced calls for significant change during the COVID-19 pandemic, but progress has been insufficient.
  • The industry's narratives about time, progress, and modernity have perpetuated inequalities related to age, gender, race, and sexuality.
  • Fashion acts as a meme, shaping social interactions and identities, making it challenging to transform the industry without broader societal change.

Fashion as a Storytelling Medium

  • Fashion is a significant storytelling medium that plays a crucial role in our lives and relationships.
  • It can convey ideas and become embedded in our minds, spreading across time, cultures, and geographies.
  • Narratologists should consider fashion as a vital storytelling medium due to its profound impact on our lives.

Overcoming Essentialist Binaries in Fashion

  • Fashion can be seen as a conveyor of human stories that maintain essentialist binaries linked to age, gender, race, and sexuality.
  • To drive meaningful change, we can use fashion to transmit new stories that reflect the complexity and diversity of our lives.
  • Overwriting the narrative that fashion is focused on linear advancement and understanding its creative force will be challenging but necessary.

The Role of Storytelling in Fashion Education

  • Former Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele criticized the industry's reckless actions and loss of heart, harmony, care, connection, and belonging.
  • Effective change in the fashion industry and fashion education requires understanding the role of stories in consolidating and critiquing essentialist binaries.
  • Focusing on storytelling has the potential to transform the fashion industry and bring about a radical reset.

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