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Fashion Culture Online Event: From Goodwill to Grunge: The Joyful Rebellion of Vintage Fashion

September 14, 2021 at 6:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Kurt Cobain on the cover of Request magazine, November 1993.
Kurt Cobain on the cover of Request magazine, November 1993.

Jennifer Le Zotte in conversation with Colleen Hill

Artists and performers—from Marcel Duchamp and Fanny Brice to Janis Joplin and  Kurt Cobain—all helped make secondhand fashion a visual marker for youth in revolt. Jennifer Le Zotte’s book, titled From Goodwill to Grunge (UNC Press, 2017), looks at how clothing, style, and commerce came together to change American culture and examines how secondhand goods sold at thrift stores, flea markets, and garage sales came to be both profitable and culturally influential. Le Zotte traces the origins and meanings of “secondhand style” and explores how buying pre-owned clothing went from a signifier of poverty to a declaration of rebellion. Considering buyers and sellers from across the political and economic spectrum, Le Zotte shows how conservative and progressive social activists—from religious and business leaders to anti-Vietnam protesters and drag queens—shrewdly used the exchange of secondhand goods for economic and political ends.

About Fashion Culture Programs

The Museum at FIT’s fall Fashion Culture programs have moved online! All programs will premiere on the museum’s YouTube channel at 6 pm on the designated day. Please subscribe to the channel for information about future events.

This event is free and open to the public; Premieres on YouTube here


September 14, 2021
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
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The Museum at FIT
(212) 217-4558