Sociologist Ashley Mears takes us behind the brightly lit runways and glossy advertisements of the fashion industry in this insider's study of the world of modeling. Mears, who worked as a model in New York and London, draws on observations as well as extensive interviews with male and female models, agents, clients, photographers, stylists, and others, to explore the economics and politics - and the arbitrariness - behind the business of glamour.
Exploring a largely hidden arena of cultural production, she shows how the right "look" is discovered, developed, and packaged to become a prized commodity. She examines how models sell themselves, how agents promote them, and how clients decide to hire them. An original contribution to the sociology of work in the new cultural economy, Pricing Beauty offers rich, accessible analysis of the invisible ways in which gender, race, and class shape worth in the marketplace.
©2011 Ashley Mears (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
"Mears gives voice to a group of women who are paid to be seen and not heard." (Slate)
"Mears has produced a fascinating study." (Boston Globe)
"Mears acknowledges that walking the runway can be a thrill unlike any other [but also] notes some of the industry's exploitative aspects." (Stylelist)
Parts of this were interesting, but there was too much lingo, too much repetition and a whole lot of stating the obvious.
This book offers a great overview from the perspective of a model in a "primary" market. Though it lacks a little depth in overlooking secondary markets (the place where most models start) and constantly speaks about poor wages per job. It shows the author may be slightly out of touch with the realities of poverty.
It's a little disjointed in its transition from industry knowledge to dissertation but there is some excellent incite on model/scout/booker/client relationships.
For anyone curious about modeling, it's absolutely worth reading!
I'm Audible's first Editor-at-Large, the host of In Bed with Susie Bright -- and a longtime author, editor, journo, and bookworm. I listen to audio when I'm cooking, playing cards, knitting, going to bed, waking up, driving, and putting other people's kids to bed! My favorite audiobooks, ever, are: "True Grit" and "The Dog of the South."
Pricing Beauty is a perceptive and eye opening look at the modeling industry and an investigation on model success and failure. You’ll find lots of delicious tidbits from fashion insiders and models in this book, so delicious!
Listen to exclusive interviews with models, agents, clients, designers, and stylists. Learn how the “right look” is discovered and developed, how far models and agents are willing to go to promote themselves, or how clients decide to hire them.
Listen to this book and you’ll never watch America’s Top Model the same way again.
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