Shifting Paradigms Impact of Technology on the diffusion of trends
Keywords:Fashion, Sales-data, Trends, Trickle-down, Bubble-up
Since the very first studies on fashion and consumption, fashion has been conceived as a very specific pattern of imitation imbricated with Modern societies, bourgeoisie and the new models of conspicuous consumption ignited by the industrial revolution. Fashion was perceived as a trickle-down system originated by the elites and subsequently adopted by the lower classes. It is only in the second half of the XX Century that intellectuals such as Ted Polhemus, suggest alternative models in order to explain the diffusion of trends such as the bubble-up model. This essay aims to update the theory of the trickle-down diffusion of trends and re-consider it as the most suitable model hitherto. Moreover, it will be analysed a fundamental question: what is happening to the diffusion of trends in the era of mechanisation, over-production and increased speed? And what will it happen in the near future? The impact of such innovations is not to be overlooked as they exert considerable pressure over the fashion business by re-directing the individual choices of contemporary clients. The aim of this essay is precisely to get closer to try an explanation of these evolutions.
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