Lolita Latina : an examination of Gothic and Lolita Style in the Mexican environment : a thesis submitted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Visual and Material Culture, College of Creative Arts, Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand

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Massey University
This thesis, completed for the award of Doctor of Philosophy in Visual and Material Culture, Ph.D., examines the development of the fashion-based Mexican Gothic and Lolita movement, and its evolution from its subcultural Japanese roots. It asks, “What are the cultural conditions that encourage this movement to flourish in the Mexican environment?” In turn, “What does Mexican culture contribute to Mexican Gothic and Lolita style?” And, “What does Mexican Gothic and Lolita style say about Mexican culture, society, and beliefs?” The Gothic and Lolita movement is currently thriving in Mexico as an authentic, independent, creative, handmade fashion industry, yet to be co-opted into mainstream culture. With the do-it-yourself aspect of the movement comes its own, unique, cultural flavour. As such, it transforms and rearranges meanings of the original subcultural style in order to make new statements, which subvert the meanings, and understandings, of the Japanese Lolita identity. Analyses of Mexican Gothic and Lolita styles, in context with the Mexican environment, culture, and belief systems, as well as the operation of the Mexican Gothic and Lolita industry, are major focal points of this study. Also investigated are the ways the movement reflects, fits into, and departs from, the philosophies of the original subculture, especially regarding sociocultural and gender politics. These latter aspects are critiqued in context with “normative” gender positions, roles and hierarchies, within mainstream Japanese and Mexican societies.
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Goth culture (Subculture), Punk culture in art, Clothing and dress, Fashion, Social aspects, Mexico, Japan