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Traje De Crioula: Representing Nineteenth-Century Afro-Brazilian Dress

Aline T. and Monteiro Damgaard

Source: Dress History. New Directions in Theory and Practice 2015

Book chapter

This chapter examines representations of Afro-Brazilian dress from nineteenth-century Brazil with the aim of examining the traje de crioula’s origin, formation and influence. The research includes comparative analysis of a broad range of nineteenth-century visual representations and written descriptions alongside analysis of surviving garments currently held in museum collections, and their subsequent interpretation and display. To present a case study for this chapter, a sample of four images is

Carmen Miranda

Fiona Corbridge

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Carmen Miranda was born in Portugal but grew up in Rio de Janeiro and considered herself a Brazilian. Her love of singing led to a career as a musical star in Brazil, going on conquer the US in 1939. Her cheery, colorful persona wiggled through a succession of Hollywood movies in extraordinary costumes that celebrated the color and passion of Brazil and its music, accented with Carmen’s trademark headpieces. Her influence on fashion in her lifetime was strong, with ranges of clothing, jewelry, sh

Alexandre Herchcovitch

Elizabeth Kutesko

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

For reasons concerning the politics of power governing the site I had chosen to do my fieldwork on, I was told by the party’s manager that I should not talk to the dancers at the events. If I wanted to do my research there I should carry it out in a discreet and silent way. Not daring to question this, I went to the top of the stand facing the dance floor and started to watch the festivities from there. My project of considering the objects through their materiality and agency had to be postponed

The Jeans that Don’t Fit: Marketing Cheap Jeans in Brazil

Rosana Pinheiro-Machado

Source: Global Denim 2011

Book chapter

In the Denim Manifesto anthropologists are challenged to study denim – something that is commonplace in our everyday lives but notably absent from ethnographic analyses. As a manifesto, the authors refute the ontological philosophical logic that an element, such as clothing, that is located on the surface of bodies is intrinsically a superficial problem. Instead they consider the philosophical implications of the use of jeans – a clothing resource that resolves the anxiety and the contradictions

Regional Dress of Latin America in a European Context

Patricia Rieff Anawalt

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

A collision of cultures occurred at the time of Spain’s sixteenth-century conquest of the two great empires of the Americas, the Mesoamerican Aztecs of central Mexico and the Andean Inka of today’s Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. Latin America’s present-day traditional dress—the distinctive, non-Western-style clothing still worn by many Central American and Andean Indians—is an amalgam of New World indigenous apparel and Spanish Colonial–period peasant attire: Two contrasting concepts of clothing con

Mappin Stores: Adding an English Touch to the São Paulo Fashion Scene

Rita Andrade

Source: The Latin American Fashion Reader 2005

Book chapter

The decision to choose São Paulo for the site of a new English department store stemmed from the fact that commercial relations had existed between Brazil and England since the eighteenth century, during the colonial period and following independence from Portugal. European influences had been prevalent since 1763, when Brazil’s capital was transferred to Rio de Janeiro in order to accommodate expanding commercial activities. This shift began the development of the southeast and, a few decades la

Dress, Body, and Culture in Brazil

Rita Andrade and Regina A. Root

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

Fashion magazines in Europe and the United States often use stereotyped, exotic images when portraying Brazilian fashion. Today, Brazilian designers are responding with designs questioning the very concept of “Brazilianness,” seeking to understand and explore multicultural influences. Brazil has a rich, though not well known, sartorial history, showing dramatic regional variation. Before the sixteenth century, natives processed fibers from native plants, which were used for adornment, hammocks, a

Film and Fashion

Alba F. Aragón

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

Attempting a full account of film and fashion in the two dozen nations of Latin America is a daunting task. The mere concept of regional and even national cinemas in Latin America is subject to debate, while the question of what Latin American fashion is has only begun to be addressed by scholars. The development of film in Latin America has been uneven and multifaceted. Often, films produced in Latin America have been purveyors of foreign fashion trends. Occasionally, they have sought to documen

South American Headwear

Beverly Chico

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

Two basic factors influence clothing and headwear worn by South Americans; one derives from ancient indigenous cultures, and the other from cultural diffusion resulting from the conquest and colonization by the Spanish and Portuguese. Most South Americans today are of mixed racial heritage. The modern urban population usually wears European- or American-style manufactured clothing and headwear. In more isolated areas, characteristic head coverings are still worn, exemplified in three climate regi

Nineteenth-Century Afro-Brazilian Women’s Dress

Kelly Mohs Gage

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

The wealth originating from Brazil for the Portuguese Crown was generated by thousands of enslaved African plantation workers. At the dawning of the nineteenth century, there was a considerable African population in Brazil. The dress of both enslaved and freed Afro-Brazilians was linked to their African past while also incorporating European and Brazilian elements. However, African dress elements are not indicators of freedom or slavery, as there were many free Africans in Brazil. African women’s

Nineteenth-Century Afro-Brazilian Men’s Dress

Kelly Mohs Gage

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

Slavery had an early and lasting impact on the cultural makeup of the colony and country of Brazil. The long-standing connection of Portugal to the African slave trade began well before the “discovery” of Brazil in 1500. This connection made the subsequent introduction and transportation of slaves to Brazil relatively easy, as the Portuguese had established links with slave traders in Africa and slave shippers ready to be involved in a new market.Annual slave imports into Brazil peaked in the ear

History of Dress in the Southern Cone

Carol García, Eva Medalla, Laura Novik and Regina A. Root

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

Dress in the Southern Cone region, which includes Argentina, Chile, Uruguay, and the southernmost regions of Brazil and Paraguay, has traditionally blended indigenous roots and foreign influences, both of which remain prevalent in today’s fashions. Several overlapping, significant historical tendencies in the region’s dress are discussed in order to elucidate the significance of these influences and fashion trends, especially Spanish and Portuguese colonial influences, the emergence of national c

Brazilian Fashion Designers

Elizabeth Kutesko

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

A new generation of Brazilian fashion designers in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries have gained an international profile with conceptual designs that challenge Western presuppositions of what constitutes “Brazilian-ness.” While earlier Brazilian fashion innovators tended to copy and edit Western fashion designs, emulating Western conceptions of beauty and good taste, the work of designers such as Alexander Herchcovitch, Ronaldo Fraga, Karlla Girotto, Jum Nakao, Isabela Capeto,

Carnaval Costume in Brazil

Pravina Shukla

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

The predominantly Catholic country of Brazil has more people of African descent than any other nation except Nigeria. In Brazil, the slave trade was not abolished until 1888, resulting in a large population of formerly enslaved people who entered the country primarily through its first capital, Salvador. The complex Afro-Brazilian identity—at once Catholic, African, and Brazilian—is on display during public events in the cities, most prominently during the pre-Lenten Carnaval celebrations in Rio

Cloth and African Identity in Bahia, Brazil

Deborah Valoma

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Latin America and the Caribbean 2005

Encyclopedia entry

The Ilê Aiyê (House of Life) Carnaval of the Afro-Brazilian state of Bahia presents a dramatic fusion of drumming, dance, and song. Spectators are routinely stunned by this three-thousand-strong parade, and its impression is owed in part to its adept manipulation of visual references. Printed cloth is a vital part of its impact, a signature of Ilê Aiyê’s Afro-Brazilian aesthetics. This parade proclaims a shared transatlantic orientation, a collective memory of oppression, and a reclamation of Afr

As She Walks to the Sea: A Semiology of Rio de Janeiro

Nizia Villaça

Source: The Latin American Fashion Reader 2005

Book chapter

The sandy expanse of Copacabana, known as Sacopenapã to the indigenous population and noted for its cashew, pitanga and iamb trees, was discovered around 1886. By the 1950s, one of its neighborhoods exhibited a particular Carioca style, made immortal by the musical composition The Little Sea Princess. This score drastically altered the reputation of Copacabana as a resort for the sick, creating an image of glamor and consumption-oriented cosmopolitism. The neighborhood would become a glowing exam

Dressing Up/Dressing Down: Reconsidering Sex and Gender Culture

Charlotte Suthrell

Source: Unzipping Gender. Sex, Cross-Dressing and Culture 2004

Book chapter

My interest in this was aroused because the words ‘soft’ and ‘softness’ cropped up so often in the questionnaires and in interviews that I realised they warranted some deeper exploration and thought. What I began to recognise was that the contrast between these two words shows up very clearly the conceptualisations which take place behind the words themselves and their accepted meanings. The UK transvestites make it very plain that for them, cross dressing is, to varying degrees, about expressing

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