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Catherine Smith

Published date
27 Jun 2018

Identity, Fashion & Clothing Choices for Women with Mobility Impairments

College: London College of Fashion
Supervisors: Dr Carolyn Mair, Simon Thorogood, Professor Ian King


This project explores the relationship between clothing and identity for women with mobility impairments. The project uses theories from fashion, body and disability studies. It explores imagery and representations of disabled bodies in art, culture and the fashion industry, and the historical context of this imagery to examine (i) the embodied experience of mobility impaired women’s interaction with fashion and (ii) the ways in which clothing choices are negotiated.

Aims and objectives

This thesis will address the following questions:

  • How is identity negotiated if certain modes of dress are not available?
  • What is the relationship between personal identity and culturally informed ideas of physically disabled bodies?
  • How do gendered expectations of disabled women influence clothing choices?