Ett fåfängt arbete : Möten med modeller i den svenska modeindustrin
Sammanfattning: This thesis is a study of the working life of fashion models in the Swedish Fashion Industry based on 18 months of ethnographic fieldwork among a network of female and male models in Stockholm. It charts the development of the modelling business in Sweden and locates it within the changing labour market of late capitalism. The study highlights the paradoxes and contradictions of the modelling profession, which provides both extraordinary career opportunities but is also full of risks and temptations, especially for young female models. Unlike many other studies of the model business, the working lives of male models and the particular challenges they face also receive attention. Two main theoretical areas are examined in this book. One deals with the fact that a model’s body is a sexualized commodity in the market. The ability to project a sexual image at work can enhance a model’s career, but this sexualization and objectification is experienced as problematic by male and female models alike, although for different reasons. In the case of women, it involves the need to appear respectable; while for men attempting to live up to heteronormative expectations of masculinity is continually challenged in a profession coded as ‘female’. A solution employed by many models is to create a professional mask or job-persona, that is detached from what they regard as their inner or authentic self. The issue of authenticity emerges as an important concern for many models and is a theme that runs through the entire thesis. A second theoretical area is the power relations that structure the modelling business, including the relationship between fashion models and model agencies, stylists, and photographers. How models manage these power relations in the form of emotional labour, compromises, or even by occasional challenges to authority is illuminated in the study.
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