So I often find I have many notes in the margins of our readings commenting on some statement or claim the author has made that I don’t agree with. But I do not get so bothered by them most of the time to feel the need to vent about them. For some reason I do feel that need with this piece (very possibly influenced by the knowledge that I have’t been on here for a while and need to post something). Sadly though I know I am not critiquing this piece in any sort of one vein, which would be good practice for class, but I just didn’t have quite that much time on my hands.

My first note (and realistically it is likely only this late because I was feeling over whelmed while reading before this) is on page 9, toward the end of the continuing paragraph from the previous page, when Davis notes as if its a second thought, something note very important at all, “right down to the very shape and bearing of the body itself.” Well of course. The way someone carries them self can nearly completely refute the feeling their clothes would give me, no matter what setting we/ I/ they are in. If I see a man in an expensive suit standing on a side walk corner, waiting for traffic to let him walk, standing aloof from the crowd around him, looking at his blackberry or snidely looking down at some begger down the block I will think a million degreee different from if I see the same man on that same corner in that same suit bending down and happily playing with/ petting some dog among the crowd while he engagingly talks to its owner. Bearing and manner speak volumes about people; as much or more than their clothes do.

The next note I have on the reading to complain about is probably very personally driven. On page 12, about in the middle of the first actual paragraph, Davis notes again as some sort of after thought (in parenthesis no less!) “some of whom truly are artisits,” refering to the people who design the fashions being discussed. Of course some of them are real artisits, really it should be said all of them are real artisits! There is no clothes designer one could sit by and watch them puzzle out some new idea or way to cut something, some new pattern to use in a novel way, that you could say is not an artist. How could you sit by someone who is sketching out idea after idea after idea (so very like any one of us) and say it is not their artistic process?

The next note is a very small one, but one that again was perhaps a particular sting because I felt it more personally; on page 15, again about half way into the first actual paragraph, Davis says that “our intuition says no,” referring to the tiny differences possible in clothing that can make it difference enough to be a fashion or not. Of course a tiny difference in a garment can make all the difference. Take a knee length skirt vs. a mini-skirt. Merely a difference in hem length, they can even be made of exactly the same fabric, same number of pleats, same colors, even standing right next to each other, even match them with the same shirt! And you will get a radically different feeling about them. The mini-skirt is flirting and suggestive, the knee length skirt is conservative and possibly strict feeling.

Maybe all these previous notes really woke me up, or just got me going, because on the last real page(s), 16nd 17 I have three complaints. I will do my best to wrap them up quickly though.

The first one is actual in the notes of pages 16 and 17, it was a complaint until I read the note on page 17 and now it has tuned into perhaps a smaller complaints about misunderstanding/ Davis being unclear. In the note on page 16 Davis notes that there was not fashion in civilizations of old, such as Egypt and China. This is either a gross point of not having done the homework/ research, for China had VERY stringent fashion rules, or else it is unclear to me how “fashion” is being used, for in the note on page 17 Davis calls a possible example of first fashion “an institutionalized fashion cycle.” So would the fashion rules of ancient China be merely an institution, or would it not have been as it is now, a communication method they would have used to note (if nothing else) how much they cared to pay attention to the fashion rules of court or the market place?

The second note on these last pages is on 17, bottom of the end of the paragraph from page 16, where Davis notes that we all “[share] a strong collective component.” The point in this paragraph seemed to be that people growing up in the same situations would end up being very similar as people. I have huge arguments with this idea. From my own life I have a perfect example: my cousin and I had nearly exactly mirroring situations in life, with very strong mothers, seemingly very loving fathers when we were young, then abrupt and violent divorces between our parents. I came out very much of the mind “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”, Paul my cousin is the greatest victim of the world, it’s always out to get him. We often can’t stand each other because of this huge difference in our reactions to the same situation. So I find Davis’ point here very aggitating.

Finally, my last note on this reading in on page 17, toward the middle-end of the only complete paragraph on this page, when Davis is talking about how the designers of fashion do what they do to give us the populace a way of expressing our selves, how fashion sprouts from their minds as only their attempt to help us truly reflect and express how we really feel inside. What nonsense! Sure, I suppose some fashion may come from this vein, like the militant shoulder pad example used earlier in this piece, but I am not wearing my jeans with the holes in the knees because I feel the need to rebel against the sterility of new jeans, or that I wish to convey that I’m a rough and tumble sort and I wear my jeans out, I just think they get softer with all that wear, more comfortable, and I just think they look fun, with all the texture and roughness.

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