News: Japanese Studies Spring 2016

Gender, Race, and Nation in the Glass of Fashion

2016 Nic photoCongratulations to Nic Querolo (’16), who has been awarded the 2016 MLL Book Prize in Japanese and recently defended his Honors Thesis, earning High Honors! Titled “Reconstructing a National Silhouette: Avant-Garde Fashion and Perceptions of the Japanese Body,” Nic’s thesis focuses on the avant-garde Japanese designer Rei Kawakubo and her label Commes des Garcon, examining how fashion as an industry and as artistic production responds to issues of gender and national heritage. His committee included Professors Tomoko Hamada-Connolly, from Anthropology; Jennifer Putzi, from the English Department and Women’s Studies Program; and Michael Cronin, from Japanese Studies. The topic reflects Nic’s interest in fashion as both a business and an art: he graduates this spring with one major in Finance and Business Administration and another major in Japanese Studies, self-designed and administered through the Charles Center. Nic’s engagement with Japan has developed over several years; he spent the spring semester of his sophomore year in the W&M study-abroad program at Keio University in Tokyo and he returned to Tokyo last summer with the support of a Charles Center Honors Fellowship.  Learn more about his research by watching the video below.  Best of luck, Nic!