Style counsellor 1

November 5, 2004

Despite the problems it has brought for Gary Day, I welcome irreverence in your pages - and it's good to see it spreading.

Take Susan Bassnett's piece on dress codes (Working Knowledge, October 29). By aping the style of a Sunday supplement, she reminds us of the vacuity of worrying about what we wear. By informing us that we live in a society "where style and image have come to matter a great deal", she reinforces the importance of having an academic community where such things do not matter. By mocking "an Oxfam smock" while quite possibly wearing one in her photograph, she cleverly shows how we should put virtue before vanity and shop at Oxfam rather than Sweatshops-R-Us. After reading her piece, I pulled on my battered trousers and tieless shirt with new zeal.

Mark Huxham
Napier University

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