• Momentaufnahmen: Building a feminist method of contemporary fashion analysis through the translation of Helen Grund’s texts

Kroenung, Teresa, 2022, Thesis, Momentaufnahmen: Building a feminist method of contemporary fashion analysis through the translation of Helen Grund’s texts PhD thesis, Royal College of Art.

Abstract or Description:

This research centralises the texts produced by the German writer and fashion journalist Helen Grund, aiming to show how their translation can build a feminist method of contemporary fashion analysis. It is guided by three research questions asking why a voice such as hers has remained barely visible within fashion studies and related discourses, how a critical analysis of diaristic texts authored by women can become a feminist tool within fashion studies, and finally, what this tool could potentially offer for an analysis of overlooked or diminished voices within contemporary fashion.

This is a cross-historical, qualitative study which places Grund and her writing at its core, building a methodology through my reading and feminist translation of her diaristic texts from German into English. Focusing on her diary allows for an autoethnographic analysis of her fashion writing, which is then applied to my approach to, and transcription and analysis of five interviews conducted with contemporary fashion practitioners over the course of one year.

This study reveals the importance of highlighting those who have previously only existed on the margins of fashion studies and related discourses. Placing more value onto the diary as a primary research text brings a voice like Grund to the forefront. By engaging in the contemporary with and through her, this research finds that personal connections matter, and that a reflexive emphasis on personal bias and experiences can unfold a thickness in feminist research that fills previously empty or undervalued spaces.

This thesis makes Grund’s texts available for an English speaking audience and opens up opportunity to further engage with them either as historical texts, or as tools within contemporary fashion spaces. It adds to an existing movement in fashion studies which calls for more interdisciplinary and intersectional research in order to make fashion discourse more inclusive and more reflective of those who engage with it. It demonstrates the value of focusing on individuals and the stories they tell, and how leaning into personal bias can become an advantage when engaging with sources in a meaningful way.

Qualification Name: PhD
Subjects: Creative Arts and Design > W200 Design studies > W230 Clothing/Fashion Design
School or Centre: School of Design
Uncontrolled Keywords: Fashion; Translation; Feminist Method; Helen Grund; Fashion Theory
Date Deposited: 09 Aug 2022 13:43
Last Modified: 09 Aug 2022 13:43
URI: https://researchonline.rca.ac.uk/id/eprint/5121
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