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Fusion of Gender and Technology in Fashion: My Utopia

2009 February 1
by DC

On Wednesday’s class we were supposed to bring in/blog about examples of our gender/technology utopias. To be honest, I couldn’t find many examples and I struggled for most of the week in my endeavor to find something that inspired me. Initially, I thought a utopic example of gender and technology would be a “world without gender” as Haraway points out–a world where the boundaries between man and woman are indistinguishable that gender becomes obsolete. Then I thought about gender neutrality and how there are a lot of devices out there that are designed to appeal to no specific sex. My iPod shuffle for example is colored silver, a popular color among electronics, and I though “Huzzah! An electronic device that is silver and therefore unisex and the only way I could distinguish it from one to another would be to listen to the music contained within”. But then I read Halberstam’s analysis of the Apple industries and its logo’s connection to the creationist theory–a belief Haraway argues is irrelevant to today’s post modern society. Damn. I guess my iPod is a wrong example. To destress I decided to look at some runway podcasts from I stumbled upon Balenciaga’s Spring/Summer 2009 ready-to-wear line.
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Perfect! I do love fashion, or rather am obsessed with it. Interviews with model, Natalia Vodianova; head designer, Nicolas Ghesquiere; Balenciaga shoe designer, Pierre Hardy; and actress, Selma Hayek all hint at the idea of futurism. Pierre Hardy brings forth the idea of a fusion between the body and the clothing since the shoes encases the platform heels therefore looking as if the shoes are part of the body. Hayek points that the line seems to present “a new race of human”. To me, this line is Haraway’s cyborg. The woman’s body has constantly been focused on and now body and technology are one.  In class, it was mentioned that perhaps humankind is now evolving through technology rather than through biology. This line, I believe, presents an artistic fusion of body and machine–my utopia.

2 Responses
  1. Alex M. permalink
    February 1, 2009

    While I know models are not supposed to have facial expression on the runway, that makeup kind of ruins their faces. Are they supposed to look androgynous?

  2. adelacruz permalink
    February 1, 2009

    Their tight ponytails and masked eyebrows do give way to an androgynous look, I think. I found it interesting that the interviewer mentioned “The Man Who Fell to Earth”, a film starring the androgynous David Bowie. So I guess, the blurring of gender differences was intentional.

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