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Katie Jones

Associate Professor of Fashion Design and Merchandising
College of Creative Arts and Media

Katie Baker Jones, PhD (University of Missouri, ‘14) is an associate professor and serves as the program coordinator in the Fashion, Dress and Merchandising department in the School of Design and Community Development. As a teacher-scholar, she delights in her role in the classroom to challenge students’ preconceived notions of fashion shaped by popular culture representations of the industry. Her core responsibilities include teaching fashion history, sustainability, and culture courses.

She has worked to decolonize the narrative often taught in these spaces and to expand students’ comprehension of the vast scale of cultural exchange that has shaped what we put on, do to, and think about our bodies and the bodies of others. Dr. Jones approaches education as a conversation, preferring the roundtable and Socratic approach, asking students to ponder the connections between macro structures and micro processes.

Dr. Jones’s research explores the construction of meaning through and for dress objects and practices. A central theme of her scholarship is liminality, both physical and metaphorical. She has focused particularly on the role fashion media has played in meaning construction for the fashion industry in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Her research goals are to merge her knowledge of the power of text and image as meaning makers with her knowledge of industry practices, fashion history, and material culture to better understand the co-constitutive role of mass media plays in the cultural valuation of the fashion industry and its outputs. To this end, she has developed three pathways in her research program: sustainable fashion discourses, gender/sexuality fashion discourses, and fashion criticism and theory.

Her work has been published in journals such as Critical Studies in Fashion and Beauty, Fashion Theory, Fashion Practice, Fashion and Popular Culture, CTRJ, and Dress. She has also contributed chapters to collected works on sustainability in luxury fashion, gendered material culture, and fashion journalism.