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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

Fancy Dress

Anthea Jarvis

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The morally questionable masquerade became unfashionable by 1820, but European society’s love of fancy dress continued. To accord with the new mood of decorum, fancy balls became the fashion, given either in private houses or as large-scale civic fund-raising events. Masks disappeared, and costumes were based on historical characters (many from Shakespeare’s plays or Sir Walter Scott’s novels), Turkish and Greek dress inspired by Byron’s poems, or the peasant dress of Spain, Italy, and Switzerlan

Carnival

Lidia Sciama

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

As anthropologists have found, people’s desire to abandon their workaday persona and temporarily adopt a different identity seems near universal. Carnival offers a ritual framework for people to act out their desires for alternative selves. Hierarchies are temporarily upturned; by acting as a safety valve, such reversals do not permanently change the social structure but reassert its validity at the end of the Carnival season. The Venice Carnival (for which the first written reference dates back

Eros and Liberty at the English Masquerade, 1710–90

Terry Castle

Source: Classic and Modern Writings on Fashion 2nd Edition 2009

Book chapter

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

Introducing Ann Summers

Merl Storr

Source: Latex and Lingerie. Shopping for Pleasure at Ann Summers 2003

Book chapter

Girls just want to have fun!

‘The Ultimate Girls’ Night In’

Merl Storr

Source: Latex and Lingerie. Shopping for Pleasure at Ann Summers 2003

Book chapter

Join in the celebration and experience the Ultimate Girls Night In(Jacqueline Gold’s introduction to the autumn & winter 1999 Ann Summers catalogue)

Objects of Desire

Merl Storr

Source: Latex and Lingerie. Shopping for Pleasure at Ann Summers 2003

Book chapter

Commenting on Sedgwick’s model of male homosociality, Terry Castle suggests that homosocial bonds between women have the potential to disrupt the structure of male homosocial bonding: (Castle 1993: 72)To theorize about female–female desire, I would like to suggest, is precisely to envision the taking apart of this supposedly intractable patriarchal structure. Female bonding, at least hypothetically, destabilises the ‘canonical’ triangular arrangement of male desire, is an affront to it, and ultim

Feminine Bodies, Feminine Pleasures

Merl Storr

Source: Latex and Lingerie. Shopping for Pleasure at Ann Summers 2003

Book chapter

The erogenous body at Ann Summers events is not encountered directly, then, but is represented in games, jokes, anecdotes, images (including catalogue images) and other ways. As such it is always filtered through the homosocial: the things women say or show about their sex lives at meetings or parties may not necessarily give a precisely accurate picture of the erogenous body and its sexual practices. However I wish to avoid the implication that there is a genuine or authentic erogenous body (i.e

Classy Lingerie

Merl Storr

Source: Latex and Lingerie. Shopping for Pleasure at Ann Summers 2003

Book chapter

Sexual properties are as inseparable from class properties as the yellowness of a lemon is from its acidity […]. This is why there are as many ways of realizing femininity as there are classes and class fractions. (Bourdieu 1984: 107–8)

Conclusion

Merl Storr

Source: Latex and Lingerie. Shopping for Pleasure at Ann Summers 2003

Book chapter

You’re Born Naked and the Rest is Drag!

Shaun Cole

Source: ‘Don We Now Our Gay Apparel’. Gay Men’s Dress in the Twentieth Century 2000

Book chapter

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