Bachelor of Arts
Humanities and Cultural Studies
Department or Program Chair
Chase B. Clow, PhD
Harlan Stelmach, PhD
Fashion has played a large role in society and the production of clothing has greatly changed for American consumers over the past hundred years. I will examine the notion of fast fashion and how these practices have changed how people shop and as a result how workers work. I will examine how some companies are creating transparency by showing their factories, actual prices of the goods, as well as focusing on small locally produced goods and the cost for Americans receiving low cost fast fashion goods. The 20th century marked the industrial revolution where clothing production greatly transformed. It marked a time where people could purchase clothes instead of making garments themselves. In 1911 the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire occurred which launched new mandates for workers, as well as limiting the amount of time children and women were allowed to work. Over one hundred years later the Savar factory collapse in Bangladesh took place and is now known to be the deadliest garment-factory disaster in history. I will compare and contrast the two fires, as well as look at the rights of workers that emerged as a result of these tragedies. This paper will also touch on the ethical implications of fast fashion and whether or not fast fashion is sustainable in the long run.