BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
People use the term “fashion” in their everyday lives. Fashion is a type of self-expression and autonomy expressed via clothes, footwear, lifestyle, accessories, cosmetics, hairdo, and body posture in a given time and place and in a specific environment. The phrase refers to a fashionable look as determined by the fashion industry (Bhabba, 1994). People used to hunt for distinct outfits exclusively for specific events and occasions back then. However, in the everyday lives of young women, the tendency has shifted dramatically. It reflects not just on what they accomplish, but also on how they carry and behave themselves (Appadurai, Arjun. 1996). This covers, among other things, the baggage they carry, the cosmetics they wear, the clothes they wear, bodily piercing, and haircuts. It is believed that the Western world dominates less-developed countries because of globalization, which is the process through which regional cultures become linked through global networking of communication and ideas. Globalization, which is driven by a combination of economic, technological, political, biological, and socio-cultural elements, creates a transnational circulation of ideas that is continually flowing as a result of technological breakthroughs (Barber, Benjamin 1996).
Bhabba, (1994) observed that the mass media is a crucial source of information for female students interested in current fashion trends relevant to their clothing. Fashion has its own section in women’s periodicals. Similarly, there are fashion and beauty programs on television. Women are bound to be interested in such fresh up-to-date and stylish fashion and dressings, university students. Female students are widely influenced by media. Their clothes and attires, that is, what they wear and what they use to beautify themselves, and even their fashion sense are mostly influenced. It has been observed that most women, regardless of age group, are influenced by western media.
Western media can be said to be the mass media of the western world. Anaeto, Onabanjo, & Osifeso, (2008) noticed that over the years, it has expanded its grip into the third world and developing countries. The impact of its influence is seen mostly on the females. Most ways western media gets its contents to its young viewers is through the print media and the electronic media. Most western magazines are mostly about the latest fashion trends, with sections being dedicated to female fashion usually having a glossy and captivating picture of models wearing the latest brands and issuing fashion statements. Visually, the western media uses the television and social media to make a statement. Students are mostly on their phones making use of the social media and are mostly the first people to ingest these information (Anaeto, Onabanjo, & Osifeso, 2008).
Over the years, there has been a gradual change in the fashion sense of students. Female students are leaning towards or have totally imbibed the fashion sense of the western world and this has been mostly through the use of the western media.
STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
The influence of the western media on fashion styles of female students has been great. Female students now dress like their western contemporaries, and are not considered in vogue if not dressed likewise. Though the western media’s influence on fashion styles of female students has been generally accepted, there has been some misgivings about it (Anaeto, Onabanjo, & Osifeso, 2008). According to Appadurai, Arjun. (1996), indecent appearance has come to characterize the dress pattern of many female students on Nigerian university campuses. There isn’t a single higher education institution in our country that isn’t affected by this cancer. The way students on college campuses, particularly female students, dress attractively leaves a lot to be desired. Some of their clothings are either too tight, too short, excessive and repulsive makeups are some of the worrisome trends noticed among our female students.
Appadurai, Arjun (1996) observed that these students imitate foreign fashion from the television, and their clothing trends are frequently at odds with their cultural orientation and expectations. As a result, the purpose of this study is to assess Western Media and its Influence on the Fashion Styles of Female Students.
OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The primary objective of this study is to assess Western Media and its Influence on the Fashion Styles of Female Students. Other objectives of this study are:
a) The impacts of western media and its influence on the fashion styles of female students.
b) To examine the factors affecting western media and its influence on female students fashion styles
c) To find the relationship between western media and fashion styles in the society.
The following research questions to guide this study are:
a) What are the impacts of western media and its influence on the fashion style of female students?
b) What are the factors affecting western media and its effects on fashion styles of female students?
c) What is the relationship between western media and fashion styles in the society?
SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study will be beneficial to the society as the impacts of western media on fashion styles will be discussed. It will also be of great benefit to the lecturers and students of higher institutions as well as the parents and caregivers.
This study will serve as existing materials for further studies and research.
SCOPE OF THE STUDY
This study focuses on the Assessment of Western Media and its Influence on the Fashion Styles of Female Students. It will also be discussing the impacts of western media on the fashion styles of female students, and the relationship between western media and the fashion styles of the society.
This study will be using the students of University of Port Harcourt as enrolled participants of this study.
LIMITATIONS OF THE STUDY
This study is limited to the assessment of western media and its influence on fashion styles of female students. It shall not be discussing any other impact of western media. This study will further be discussing on the impacts and not proffering solutions to the to the negative impacts of western media on fashion styles of female students.
The findings of this study will be limited to the University of Calabar, Cross River State, thus the results cannot be in any other institution in the country.
DEFINITION OF TERMS
Assessment: the action of assessing someone or something
Western media: mass media of the western world
Influence: the capacity to have an effect on the character, development, or behaviour of someone or something, or the effect itself.
Fashion styles: personal style of fashion
Students: a person studying at a university or a place of higher education