The philosopher’s double cloak: Diderot and Marx on coats, dressing gowns and crisis | Intellect Skip to content
1981
Celebrity and Crisis
  • ISSN: 2044-2823
  • E-ISSN: 2044-2831

Abstract

The dismissive stance of thinkers towards fashion is often the starting point for those theories of fashion that are increasingly contributing to overcoming it. However, very rarely do even philosophies of fashion dedicate as much as a single thought to the fashion of philosophers. This neglected aspect of the everyday life of intellectuals, people of the mind, provides a new interpretive key. This article explores two prominent cases of intellectual celebrities, to whom we turn especially in times of crisis, personal or public. Diderot famously underwent a personal crisis as a result of a beautiful new silk dressing gown. Marx, on the other hand, often on the verge of destitution, repeatedly pawned his coat – which poignantly also featured at the beginning of as the epitome of the commodity that does not keep you warm – affecting his capacity or otherwise to go and study at the British Museum. These two cases take us directly to the clothed body of two intellectuals and to the struggle – of mind and body, private and public – that led them, via practice, to theory.

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2024-01-24
2024-04-14
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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): body; clothes; Diderot; fashion; intellectuals; Marx; value
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