Zadie Smith On Identity
Dress Your Spirit is a regular feature here in which we shift the focus from what's on the outside to what's within. This is warranted, I think, because ultimately, good style is about knowing ourselves. As such, I think it's important for fashion to help us nurture the spirits we dress and not just the bodies. Today, I'm inspired by a passage from Zadie Smith about our misdirected search for identity from her novel On Beauty.
Stop worrying about your identity and concern yourself with the people you care about, ideas that matter to you, beliefs you can stand by, tickets you can run on. Intelligent humans make those choices with their brain and hearts and they make them alone. The world does not deliver meaning to you. You have to make it meaningful...and decide what you want and need and must do. It’s a tough, unimaginably lonely and complicated way to be in the world. But that’s the deal: you have to live; you can’t live by slogans, dead ideas, clichés, or national flags. Finding an identity is easy. It’s the easy way out.
Feature image Zadie Smith photographed by Inez & Vinoodh for The Gentlewoman FW 2016.