Making, Doing & Consuming in Japanese Lolita Subculture:Japanese Contexts of cultural appropriation and consumption
True to the spirit of its roots within (but not limited to)
, Lolita has alwayshad self-presentation and clothing at the core of its identity. Evident in thefashion-centred
Gothic & Lolita Bible
as well as the aesthetic-orientedexpressions of its musical and literary branches, self-ornamentation and dress isat the heart of Lolita, around which related lifestyle trends have established andinterwoven to create an original subcultural fabric. As discussed in the previouschapters, Lolita clothing can be described as a particular intersection of traditions
and originality, expressed by Takemoto Novala as “a fus
ion of the spirit of punkrock with formal
beauty that honours tradition” (2008, p. 214).
The aesthetics converging inLolita culture are a bricolage ofromanticised Western notions andmixed reactions to Japanesetraditions and norms. The Westernfacets concern recognisable elementssuch as the G
oth edge of Mana’s
E.G.L., the Rococo spirit of
Takemoto’s Momoko decked out in
Baby, The Stars Shine Bright, as wellas other nostalgic references to Euro-fantasy such as a Victoriana taste forornament andthe extensive use of the English and French languages (Fig. 1). While theseelements, culturally familiar to us in the West, primarily pertain to the subject
Fig. 1: Rococo-style English dresses circa.1760 (Fukai, 2004, p. 14).