Dr Anthony Sullivan

Senior Lecturer in Cultural and Historical Studies

London College of Fashion

Biography

Tony began his academic career in adult literacy as a volunteer over twenty years ago. After completing a Certificate of Education (FE) at the University of Greenwich in 1991, he taught for ten years as a Lecturer in English, Media and Communications in the Department of General Education at Waltham Forest College in East London. Whilst working there full-time he studied part-time for two Masters degrees in the Department of Media and Communications at Goldsmiths College, University of London.

Having gained both an MA and an MRes in Media and Communications, he was awarded full-time funding, for three years, by the AHRB to research his doctoral thesis ‘Consuming Brands’ at Goldsmiths, where he also worked as a Visiting Tutor for four years, teaching on a range of undergraduate courses in media studies and cultural theory.

Having successfully completed his PhD in 2006, he taught as an Associate Lecturer at UEL, Middlesex and the Open University. Later that year, he joined the Department of Cultural and Historical Studies at LCF, where he has researched and taught a range of undergraduate courses including research methods. He also coordinates Cultural and Historical Studies provision in the School of Design and Technology. Currently, he is working on a number of projects for publication whilst continuing to lead a range of undergraduate courses including Introduction to Cultural and Historical Studies, the Production of Fashion and, Fashion, taste and ethics. He is also a final year undergraduate dissertation supervisor and doctoral supervisor.

Research interests

Materialist approaches to class, fashion, production and consumption. Marxist approaches to the analysis of fashion, culture, economy, brands, ethics and politics.

Research statement

My doctoral thesis ‘Consuming Brands’ (2006) used ethnography, in particular focus groups, to study consumption of brands by late teenagers in East London, Hertfordshire and Essex. That work drew out issues to do with fashion and subjectivity, class and gender and the psycho-social economy of young people’s relationship to High Street apparel and footwear brands. This has been developed into a book proposal which is nearing its final stage, having been favourably received in initial form by the prospective publisher.  

I am also currently working on two other publications. 'Marx, fashion and capitalism', a chapter in an edited collection on theory and fashion. In addition to this, I am working on the entry of ‘fashion’ for the forthcoming ‘Encyclopaedia of Consumer Studies’ to be published by Blackwell. I have also researched, developed and taught a unit on the relationship between fashion, taste and ethics, focusing on debates about fashion and sustainability. Additionally, I have researched a range of issues which have emerged in relation to the production of fashion, including the impact of globalisation, the persistence of sweated labour and the possibilities for the greening of fashion, as a part of the undergraduate options units I lead at LCF.

Students

Current students and thesis titles

Liza Betts, The intricacy of the ordinary and the complexity of the everyday; their translation into screen costume.

Elizabeth (Lezley) George, Deconstructing Fashion Identities: dress codes, modesty and fashion practices in the UAE.

Completed students and thesis titles

Nazli Alimen,Observant Muslims in Turkey: Creating Islamic Fashions and Constructing Islamic Identities.

Selected research outputs