Looking modern : fashion journalism and cultural modernity in Shanghai, Singapore and Hong Kong

Tay, Jinna (2007) Looking modern : fashion journalism and cultural modernity in Shanghai, Singapore and Hong Kong. PhD thesis, Queensland University of Technology.


This thesis examines the development of Asian cultural modernity in the cities of Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai through their fashion magazines. These three cities have positioned themselves as aspirants to global city status, concurrently facilitating their ambitions by relaxing media laws and emphasising cultural production. One outcome is a growth in the production and consumption of fashion magazines. There has been a parallel growth in the consumption of and interest in fashion and self-adornment in these cities, particularly through global brand names. This thesis investigates these cultural transformations by examining the production of fashion texts in the context of their cities. It does this by utilising the concept of fashion journalism (as a product of fashion, journalism and the city) as a means of identifying the contemporary social, cultural and political articulations of these fashion texts. To do so, this research draws together a framework that takes into account different fields (fashion, journalism, modernity, city, Asia) that contribute to the concept of fashion journalism, thereby approaching fashion texts through a multi-disciplinary perspective anchored by establishing the contexts of each city and its specific magazine. The subsequent analyses of Vision (Shanghai), WestEast (Hong Kong) and Harper's Bazaar Singapore reflect and capture an evolution of these cities coming into their own. With particular emphasis on the cultural assertions of global Chinese identities in WestEast, an escape from national discourses through participating in cosmopolitanism in Harper's, and the emphasis on popular visual culture as a form of popular literacy and knowledge formation in Vision. These findings contribute firstly, towards an understanding of the issues occurring in the cultural modernisation of these cities and secondly, of fashion journalism as a promoter of the experiences of cultural modernity in Asia.

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ID Code: 16455
Item Type: QUT Thesis (PhD)
Supervisor: Hartley, John, Rennie, Elinor, & Romano, Angela
Keywords: Asia, Chinese-ness, city, consumption, cosmopolitanism, creative cities, culture, cultural modernity, fashion, fashion journalism, Hong Kong, journalism, looking, magazines, popular culture, sex, Shanghai, Singapore, visual culture
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Creative Industries Faculty
Department: Faculty of Creative Industries
Institution: Queensland University of Technology
Copyright Owner: Copyright Jinna Tay
Deposited On: 03 Dec 2008 04:03
Last Modified: 22 Jun 2017 14:40

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