1. I believe that the United States is in a “Legitimization Crisis”, because first of all we Americans try our hardest to “fit” in. Something that happened to me yesterday actually made me think about this topic a little more. I met this exchange student from Japan and as we talked about little Tokyo she asked me if they had stores that sold traditional Japanese clothing I answered her yes, then she replied “oh I do not like the Japanese style I prefer the American style of clothing”. Which then made me think about our class discussion last Thursday, from my point of view it is sad to see so many cultures in America trying their hardest to camouflage into our American social norm of dressing. I do believe clothing plays a huge role in identifying who we are, but I also think it back fires when suddenly we all want to fit into this “American-Style” of clothing because we tend to lose who we really are. Now I do not walk around in traditional Mexican clothing but I love different cultures and I always mix culture in the things I wear and the things I do(design). Like said in Identities Through Fashion, “it is claimed that statuses that had traditionally served as the principal sources of personal identity, such as those derived from nationality , religious affiliation, community, occupation and family membership, have lost their significance, with the result that individuals have been left with no firm basis or anchorage for their sense of self.”, in conclusion I just think that if we as individuals go around hiding our cultures(clothing) we will unwillingly lose who we are.
2.A novelty purchase has never ever really provided me lasting satisfaction. To start of I do not even like going shopping, the whole idea of going store to store looking for what I want gives me headaches, so whenever I do go “shopping” I only go to one specific store for one item in particular. What I do like doing is going fashion hunting in thrift shops, I enjoy finding what I call unique pieces there. Not only do I like finding garments that are unique but I also like the price on them, and even though these items bring a whole lot of satisfaction to me, that feeling usually only lasts about a day or two. I believe that the things I buy for others leave me a longer satisfaction, or those gifts my peers give me, they really satisfy me. I believe that “vague” purchases give me little to no satisfaction because I get home and complain about how much I spent on something that I really did not even need. Now when I go finding vintage clothing I ask myself many times if I really need the clothing piece then I think about what piece at home I will get rid of so that I don’t get into the habit of having so much clothing. Now sometimes I do have my mini fantasies of how it would feel to be wearing name brands clothing all the time but I believe that purchases that we make based on these thoughts only satisfy our brain and not our person as a whole, as stated in Identities Through Fashion, “individuals do not so much desire satisfaction from products as they seek pleasure from the self-illusory experiences that they construct from their associated meanings.”
3. I believe we Americans as a society are so used to everything moving fast, it is basically the environment we have come to know and live in. If we go to work or school in the morning it is always in a rush, if we are driving out in the streets we always tend to have the urge to go faster and faster, I believe our society does not know the word patience. And so once fashion started becoming such an important factor in our society we then related speed to it, and since there is a lot of fast fashion here in the United States it just fastens the whole process of buying and buying “new” fashions. So therefore we begin consuming more that what we really need, and thus identify ourself as the typical American consumer that buys and buys and keeps buying without limits. This differs a lot to other countries because they actual have to understand and take to account what they want and what they actually need. The following excerpt from identities Through Fashion states that, “it is self-evident that the goods we purchase and use must say something about who we are”, this is true in our American Society because our consumption is something that defines who we are because it is our way of living.