The complex interconnections between religious beliefs and fashion in clothing have been increasingly recognised by researchers, journalists and fashion producers. At the same time, fashion has begun to be a force that can shape religious communities and create debates, often of a controversial nature, within and between faiths. This special issue will explore these matters, focusing on sartorial fashion/religion interfaces in their diverse and multiple forms across the world today.
Fashion scholarship has long claimed that no-one exists fully outside of fashion systems. Yet many religious believers, especially those with more conservative mindsets, think that they are not influenced by secular and commercial fashion trends. So, who is right? At the same time, some religiously-oriented individuals may embrace fashion fully, while others might seek to balance fashionability with religious precepts and forms of conduct. Which sorts of balancing and mediating are occurring across the world today, among different religious groups in diverse locations? Which social and cultural forces and contexts shape these balancing acts? What are the differences between religiously-oriented dress practices in ‘home’ countries and in diasporic contexts? How are these matters bound up with globalization processes?
Most scholarly attention on fashion/religion interfaces has been on women’s dress practices, but what about men? In what ways do dynamics to do with sexualities, ethnicities, classes, disabilities, and other social factors impact on religiously-aware dress choices?
While the major scholarly and political focus has recently been on the relations between Islam and fashion, especially in terms of veiling, people with other religious affiliations must also make choices regarding fashion and dress issues. Papers focusing on any religion and belief system, and on any geographical (and/or virtual) location, are welcomed for this special edition. Articles comparing different religious and/or sectarian groups are also invited.
Contributions are sought from diverse disciplinary and inter-disciplinary backgrounds across the social sciences and humanities. Papers which report novel empirical findings, and innovate in theoretical and methodological terms, are particularly encouraged.
Information about the special issue and submission guidelines: https://www.mdpi.com/journal/religions/special_issues/fashion
For queries, contact Anna-Mari Almila a.almila [at] fashion.arts.ac.uk