The purpose of Sofia’s doctoral research is to explore the eternal return of myth and history in high fashion by performing semiotic analysis of several fashion collections of the 20th and 21st century from high fashion brands such as Chanel, Dolce & Gabbana and Alexander McQueen based on Roland Barthes’ semiotics and “Mythologies”. The study is focused on Western fashion history and is divided in four historic periods, Classical Greece, Byzantium, Renaissance and Rococo/Baroque. Each of these periods will be explored based on its history and the dominant fashion styles that have inspired modern designers to re-invent and revive the aura and the myth of those eras’ culture in their collections.
Furthermore, significant female personalities, real or mythical, will be considered the main sources of inspiration for the designers: Greek Olympian Goddesses for Ancient Greece, Empress Theodora for Byzantium, Queen Elizabeth I for Renaissance and Marie Antoinette for Rococo/Baroque.
Emphasis is laid upon understanding the impact of the myth and history on fashion and the designers’ inward desire for using memory and nostalgia by applying Walter Benjamin’s “tiger’s leap” theory. Finally, focus is placed upon the becoming concept found in Deleuze and the metamorphosis of the woman wearer into “becoming-goddess/queen”.