Introduction WHY A HISTORY OF WESTERN FASHION?
WE ALL HAVE an intuitive sense of what clothes mean. When you walk into a room or down the street, even without thinking about it, you immediately take note of clothing clues and judge the wearers accordingly. You can usually tell at a glance whether a person is rich, poor, or somewhere in the middle. Often, you can even guess what someone does for a living—the messenger with his pants legs rolled up, the businessman in his suit.
And yet, it’s rare that people think about what their own clothes signify about their place in the world or their...