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Fashion and Gender

Patrick Mauriès


The first visually led exploration of androgyny, the combination of female and male characteristics, from representations in antiquity to its current prevalence in the fashion world and beyond

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‘This ad is gender neutral’, proclaimed a recent poster for Diesel; ‘I resist definitions’, announced a Calvin Klein campaign; while a Louis Vuitton shoot featured Jaden Smith, son of actor Will Smith, wearing a skirt like a natural. Fashion magazines have printed countless features on the blurring of gender boundaries, while brands including Yves Saint Laurent, Gucci, Burberry, Givenchy and Dolce & Gabbana have all interpreted this theme in their own distinctive style.

Androgyny is nothing new: it has been a leitmotif of western culture for millennia, beguiling and preoccupying artists and writers since Plato. The blending of genders was a constant through the cultural waves of the 20th century, from Berlin in the 1920s and Hollywood in the 1930s, to the androgynous pop stars of the 1970s, 1980s and beyond – Jagger, Bowie, Grace Jones…

What do these variations on a theme have in common? And what has caused the dizzying resurgence of androgyny in the twenty-first century? This book places images by some of the world’s greatest fashion designers and photographers alongside works of art and portraiture from many eras. It presents a condensed cultural history of androgyny, drawing on the worlds of art and literature to give us a deeper understanding of the timeless human drive to break free from defined categories.

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'Unique … offers multi-faceted perspectives into the drive to escape defined categories'


Product Information

Book Details

Format: PLC (no jacket)

Size: 33.6 x 24.0 cm

Extent: 192 pp

Illustrations: 120

Publication date: 19 October 2017

ISBN: 9780500519356

Contents List

Introduction • 1. The Platonic Body • 2. A Body of Ivory • 3. The Body Inverted 4. Bodies in Opposition

About the Author

Patrick Mauriès is a writer and publisher of many notable titles on fashion and design, including Jewelry by Chanel, A Cabinet of Rarities, The World According to Karl and Fashion Quotes to name a few, all published by Thames & Hudson.

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