Master’s Theses of the Graduating Classes of 2013

 It is with great pleasure that I invite you to read about these four theses completed in the MA Program in the History of Decorative Arts and Design this past year. Our students proudly embrace a diverse range of historic and contemporary topics and engage with a wide geographic field, as these theses investigate the United States, Europe, and Brazil. In fact, many students have not limited their research to the parameters of one nation and have embraced an analysis that considers issues related to international concerns of stylistic influence and globalization.

I hope you enjoy reading these abstracts and exploring the work of these exciting young scholars who approach design and material culture in ways that will, I am confident, open your mind to a new way of thinking about the world of things. I encourage you to visit the Smithsonian Library at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum to read these students’ completed theses, which offer cutting-edge research in the history of the decorative arts and design.

-David Brody, Associate Professor of Design Studies,
Director, MA in History of Decorative Arts and Design


It is with great pleasure that the MA Fashion Studies program at Parsons The New School for Design presents the abstracts of the Masters Thesis projects of its graduating class of 2013.

The MA Fashion Studies program was founded as the first graduate program of its kind in parsons’ School of Art and Design History and Theory in 2010. Envisioned as a program that fosters the critical and cultural analysis of fashion as object, image, and practice, our MA students continue to augment, challenge, and push the borders of the field of fashion studies with their innovative research. This year alone, MA graduates have critically explored the relationship with fashion and the body, cultural identity, and gender race and ethnicity with protest movements, media industries, politics, nationalism, branding, plastic surgery, literature and even science fiction. This wide array of themes and questions continues to illuminate the diverse dimensions of fashion as mediated, imagined, and lived practices that we inhabit and encounter in the everyday.

To our class of 2013, we offer you our deepest congratulations. Your work continues to inspire us all.

-Christina Moon, Assistant Professor of Fashion Studies,
Director, Masters Program in Fashion Studies



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