Style is often derided as superficial fluff, mere decorative nonsense that distracts us from what’s important. Yet, some of the greatest minds in history...
HOW STYLE CAN SAVE THE WORLD
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Style is often derided as superficial fluff, mere decorative nonsense that distracts us from what’s important. Yet, some of the greatest minds in history cause us to think otherwise. Not only does style make life more pleasant and products more palatable, it's fundamental to human happiness.
In his book The Architecture of Happiness, Alain de Botton explores the connection between design and happiness. Are the two inextricably linked? Absolutely, he says. “Beauty has a huge role to play in altering our mood,” he says. “When we call a chair or a house beautiful, really what we're saying is that we like the way of life it's suggesting to us. It has an attitude we're attracted to.”
But can style do something beyond making life prettier and more enjoyable? Can it save the world?
We argue that it already has, many times over.
- Through the style of his syntax, Kendrick Lamar has mobilised millions of young people on the topic of racial politics.
- 1940s fashion was at the forefront of the Women's Liberation movement.
- Steve Jobs invented fonts because he understood what programmers didn't. Style motivates us to be creative and productive.
- Punk, through its anti-style approach to creation, has powered activism and driven change.
Virtue brings together tastemakers of high and low style to unpack the potential of style to do real good in the world. Explore how — if we're ever going to stave off impending doom — style is our starting point. Find out why style doesn't just matter, it’s essential.