In his chapter, George Simmel, examines the world of fashion as a factor of social life “built on the coupling of opposites”. Simmel looks at fashion as a way that one can express their sense of individualism by separating themselves from the norm but at the same time to express imitation and conformity. People are so into fashion because the clothing they wear represents what they stand for and what they believe in.
Fashion trends over the years have become very popular as each person tries to wear the newest trend to fit in with society and to be known as “cool”. Fashion allows for uniqueness because it makes the individual feel that they mean something to society. Fashion trends come and go as the shirt you are wearing today can be seen as old and out of fashion tomorrow. Simmel states that “with the destruction of its very purpose to cultivate individuality the fashion dies, only to be replaced by a new trend that through its inevitable spread, will also face its equally inevitable death”.
Simmel talks about the eb and flow of fashion trends and who affects the rise and demise of fashion trends. He looks at the upper class when it comes to the separation between them and the lower class. The upper class want to stick out from the ordinary lower class and therefore they wear clothes that many people in the lower class can not afford. Fashion also helps identify ones class position. If you see someone wearing a nice suit and polished shoes than you would consider them wealthy and in the upper class. On the other hand if you see a person with dirty and unkempt clothes on you would think that they belong to the lower class. From Simmel’s chapter we learn that the pace at which fashion trends change quickens in modern day societies. The lower class in these advanced societies have greater wealth relative to those in less developed socities states Simmel