I began injecting testosterone at thirty. When I slipped on the jacket in front of the mall mirror at thirty-two, I beamed. Tattooed, with a little hard-won stubble, I could see my contrasts cleanly, my aesthetics an armour telegraphing a history beyond words. A prison for some men was, for me, a church: the rare and precise glory of an integrated self.
Continuing from Vestoj’s fourth issue, ‘On Fashion and Power’, Dr Anna Akbari’s series speaks with individuals who each hold positions of relative power within their industry. Akbari reveals how our choice of clothing reflects and shapes our vocation, speaking more broadly about how we wear power and the often under-recognised significance of this relationship.
Dr Anna Akbari’s series of conversations with individuals who each hold positions of relative power within their particular industry reveals the way we wear power within a workplace and position. What makes us look and feel powerful is an experience that is entirely specific and personal to an individual and their vocation, constructed in the subtle details and signifiers of dress – such as a retro iPhone, or vintage-style Warby Parker frames – that help to maintain propriety and confidence within the relevant industry.
Few fashion archetypes measure up as having the symbolic power that the ‘business suit’ has. The suit is both a symbol of power and professionalism in corporate culture, but also of monotony and complacency, which in turn hints at the potential for human frailty.