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On the right foot

From fashion and feminism to business, health and more, shoes offer Concordians a closet-full of subjects to research
May 5, 2014
By Louise Morgan and Alyssa Tremblay

Yellow booties, red shoes, cowboy boots, flowered pumps, teetering heels, cleats, platforms, ballet flats, sneakers, flip-flops. The list of foot-covering options for men and women seems endless.Shoes can be practical, expressive, demonstrate status or social views — and so much more. It’s a huge business. Statistics Canada reports that shoe stores hit $259 million in sales in December 2013 alone.

The global footwear market is expected to reach US$195 billion by 2015, according to research from Global Industry Analysts. And footwear is the only Canadian apparel industry sector that’s growing, according to recent findings by international marketing firm NPD Group. Hudson’s Bay Company and other department stores are expanding their shoe departments, especially at the higher end of the market.

Concordia experts step in to offer their expertise on footwear-related topics:

Branding: that’s shoe biz
Zeynep Arsel, associate professor, Department of Marketing
"It’s easy for shoe lovers to get carried away..." Read more


If the shoe fits: healthy footwear
David Paris, associate professor, Department of Exercise Science
"The purpose of footwear is to protect feet..." Read more


Feminist footwear
Kerry McElroy, film historian and feminist scholar
“Fashion — including footwear — can be a tool of liberation and oppression..." Read more


Ritual soles: shoe psychology
Andre L. Souza, postdoctoral studies, Centre for Research in Human Development
"From runners to speed skaters to tennis professionals..." Read more


Shoes on first: design for theatre
Amy Keith, lecturer, Department of Theatre
"Good theatre casts a spell over the audience..." Read more


Breaking the glass slipper: Cinderella
Elaine Pigeon, part-time faculty, Department of English
"In the fantasy shoe hall of fame right next to Dorothy and her ruby red heel-clickers sits Cinderella..." Read more

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