Hello, is there anyone in this fitting room?

September 20, 2018

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“Closets are embedded within the structures of the home, and are transparent or invisible in the sense that using a closet is process that functions in a similar manner each time it occurs. This use also speaks to the closet’s scope; use of a closet has some general similarities across location and time. While these similarities mark closets as infrastructure,use of closets and what goes in them is still influenced by culture and society. ”

In “Does Infrastructure have Gender? Third-order Dilemmas”, authors gave closet the notion of infrastructure, try to study the closet In the framework of infrastructure, views on the role of gender are characterized as politics. Their proposal makes me think of a related issue which I concerned for a long period – fitting room, a ubiquitous space exists in almost every clothing store, so I would regard it in the category of infrastructure based on qualities described by Susan Leigh Star, “such as embededness, transparency and invisibility, as well as scope.”

In some clothing stores, usually the Fast-selling clothing stores, there is no separate fitting room for different genders, everyone shares the common rooms, this situation is rare in eastern countries, but I realized it’s much more common here. The advantages are obvious, let people get into the fitting room without thinking about which gender they belong to. But after my friend’s experience of being broke in during dressing in the non-gender fitting room, I began to think about this issue, and the phenomenon that fitting room without lock while it’s also non-gender. Since it’s only curtained off, the crime can be prevented and found easily, Simultaneously, the breaking through events, unintentionally or on purpose, can be happened a lot. So, the reason that the non-gender fitting room doesn’t equipped with lock is really of interest to me. In my opinion, reasons probably have relations to the budgets, or not attach importance to it, or maybe the merit of preventing crime. I would like to dig more into it and also other factors in fitting rooms as infrastructure.

Gu, Jin

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