Online course in Creative Arts & Media

Understanding Fashion: From Business to Culture

Discover the impact of fashion on commerce and culture with industry insight from top fashion houses.

  • Duration 4 weeks
  • Weekly study 3 hours
  • Learn Free
  • Extra benefits From $59 Find out more

Discover fashion from both cultural and business perspectives

For almost 150 years, fashion has been a deep cultural mechanism that has transformed almost every part of Western culture.

Under the supervision of Benjamin Simmenauer, with exclusive input from designers like Simon Porte Jacquemus, Christelle Kocher, Paul Smith, and CEOs at Chanel, YSL and Hermès, you’ll be introduced to the phenomena of contemporary fashion.

Whether you’re a marketing student or an experienced professional looking to refresh your fashion knowledge, you’ll take a dual approach to the study of fashion and investigate it as both a cultural phenomenon and a creative industry.

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What topics will you cover?

  • Fashion and modernity: contemporary relevance, ‘Zeitgeist’, and the desirability of the new.
  • Fashion and society: the concept of trends, social distinction and selection, culture and subcultures.
  • Fashion as a language: decoding silhouettes, the genre of fashion literature and fashion press.
  • Fashion and consumption: fashion and gender, the emergence of ‘lifestyle’, fetishism.

When would you like to start?

Most FutureLearn courses run multiple times. Every run of a course has a set start date but you can join it and work through it after it starts. Find out more

  • Available now
    This course started 18 Nov 2019

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you'll be able to...

  • Develop transdisciplinary knowledge and expertise aimed at understanding the logics of the contemporary fashion field
  • Identify the creative models of the different fashion houses and their conception of time
  • Explore the trends diffusion models
  • Interpret a fashion silhouette
  • Explain the construction of consumer behaviour

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for:

  • Marketing students or young professionals who want to specialise in fashion.

  • Experienced fashion professionals who want to refresh or increase their knowledge of the field.

  • Present or future fashion entrepreneurs who need a holistic view of the industry’s key success factors.

This course is supported by DEFI.

Who will you learn with?

Benjamin Simmenauer

Benjamin Simmenauer

I am a permanent professor at Institut Français de la Mode, where I teach fashion theory and fashion brands strategy. My background is in analytic philosophy and social sciences.

Who developed the course?

IFM (Institut Français de la Mode) is a higher education institution specialising in the textile, fashion, luxury and design industries, based in Paris, France.

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