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The Handbag from the 1970s to 2000

Lucy Moyse

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The need to collect, carry, and contain one’s belongings has existed for as long as humanity. From sacks to hold prehistoric flint and pouches for early coins to purses with contemporary cosmetics, various types of handbags have appeared in art and writing throughout history. While always fulfilling a practical function, handbags have also evolved with changing needs. They can be signifiers of fashion, social status, and even psychological state, as they mediate the boundaries between interior an

Bibliographic guide

In response to the question of what is the social psychology of dress, one first needs to address two related questions: what is dress and what is social psychology? The term dress has been defined by dress scholars Mary Ellen Roach and Joanne Eicher (1992) as the total arrangement of outwardly detectable body modifications and all material objects added to it in the form of body supplements. Body modifications are transformations made directly to the body and include making changes of color (e.g

Subcultural Body Style and Identity

Therèsa M. Winge

Source: Body Style 2012

Book chapter

Each subculture member has individual lived body experiences, which collectively create the generalizations about the subculture’s identity. These generalizations are then further extended to collective ideas about identity regarding the individual member, the specific subculture, and the entirety of all subcultures to some degree. The subcultural body becomes an amalgam of experiences—for example, piercings, tattoos, spiky hair, and propensity toward pain. Furthermore, each subculture has unwrit

Hair

Geraldine Biddle-Perry and Sarah Cheang

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Global Perspectives 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Across cultures, the symbolic and material management of hair on bodies, faces and heads is intrinsic to human adornment and hygiene, ritualized belief, and commercial enterprise. Fashions in hair can display an enormous and shifting range of aesthetic and social conventions. A wide variety of primary and secondary sources provides an overview of key debates and theories that describe, inform, and develop our understanding of the styling and management of human hair as a powerful vehicle for soci

Fashion: From Class Differentiation to Collective Selection

Herbert Blumer

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

Book chapter

This paper is an invitation to sociologists to take seriously the topic of fashion. Only a handful of scholars, such as Simmel (1904), Sapir (1931), and the Langs (1961), have given more than casual concern to the topic. Their individual analyses of it, while illuminating in several respects, have been limited in scope, and within the chosen limits very sketchy. The treatment of the topic by sociologists in general, such as we find it in textbooks and in occasional pieces of scholarly writing, is

Does Fashion Need a Theory?

Ingrid Loschek

Source: When Clothes Become Fashion. Design and Innovation Systems 2009

Book chapter

What do Marcel Duchamp’s Urinoir, which he interpreted as the art object Fountain in 1917, and a dress full of holes that Julien McDonald created, which he defined as a lace dress in 1997, have in common? Neither work ‘functions’ without the underlying tension between what is visible and the statement made about it. In 1917, Duchamp submitted the urinal as an artwork for the annual exhibition of the Society of Independent Artists in New York. His claim was that the context—the art exhibition, the

The Philosophy of Fashion

Georg Simmel

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

Book chapter

Man's desire to please his social environment contains two contradictory tendencies, in whose play and counterplay in general, the relations among individuals take their course. On the one hand, it contains kindness, a desire of the individual to give the other joy; but on the other hand, there is the wish for this joy and these ‘favours’ to flow back to him, in the form of recognition and esteem, so that they be attributed to his personality as values. Indeed, this second need is so intensified

Fashion and the Self

Annette Lynch and Mitchell D. Strauss

Source: Changing Fashion. A Critical Introduction to Trend Analysis and Meaning 2007

Book chapter

‘All clothing is erotic.’

Fashion as Collective Behavior

Annette Lynch and Mitchell D. Strauss

Source: Changing Fashion. A Critical Introduction to Trend Analysis and Meaning 2007

Book chapter

‘Well, I try my best to be just like I am, But everybody wants you to be just like them.’

Understanding Women and Their Wardrobes

Sophie Woodward

Source: Why Women Wear What They Wear 2007

Book chapter

The question ‘does this go?’ invariably involves the twin question ‘is this me?’, as the particular styles, colours and textures come to form part of a woman’s sense of who she is and who she can be through clothing. Although the items are usually bought in the mass market, the particular range of items in the wardrobe is always unique, as the mass-produced items sit alongside the dress borrowed from a friend or gifted by an auntie. Furthermore, as women wear particular items of clothing, they co

Background Reading

Samantha Holland

Source: Alternative Femininities. Body, Age and Identity 2004

Book chapter

Since the key overall theme of the research is femininity (how it is rendered, played out, resisted and understood), here I review ideas about and definitions of femininity and how these definitions do (or do not) link to the research. ‘What is femininity?’ is a question which has exercised feminist writers for decades and many feminist writers have attempted to pin down the elusive concept of femininity. For example, Brownmiller asserts that ‘femininity, in essence, is a romantic sentiment, a no

‘More Like Torture than Love’?

Samantha Holland

Source: Alternative Femininities. Body, Age and Identity 2004

Book chapter

Being ‘policed’ by other people (as opposed to policing oneself, which is discussed in the next chapter) was a subject several participants discussed angrily. Potential threats were of concern to the participants since their appearance marked them out as more visible and, despite feeling defiant, they attempted to take action to circumvent any negative attention. For example, Kiki said:

Reflections and Conclusions

Samantha Holland

Source: Alternative Femininities. Body, Age and Identity 2004

Book chapter

The pathologies of female protest function, paradoxically, as if in collusion with the cultural conditions that produce them, reproducing rather than transforming precisely that which is being protested.

J.C. Flügel and the Nude Future

Michael Carter

Source: Fashion Classics from Carlyle to Barthes 2003

Book chapter

It seems that the two human needs – to disclose oneself and conceal oneself – would be combined in the female psyche in quite a different way than in the male.

Dis/continued Selves: Why do Women Keep Clothes They No Longer Wear?

Maura Banim and Ali Guy

Source: Through the Wardrobe. Women’s Relationships with Their Clothes 2001

Book chapter

A wardrobe for things I don’t wear. (Melanie interview)

Cancer, Breast Reconstruction and Clothes

Anna van Wersch

Source: Through the Wardrobe. Women’s Relationships with Their Clothes 2001

Book chapter

In recent years, the surgical treatment of breast cancer has made significant advances: from radical mastectomy, in which both pectoral muscles are removed en bloc with the breast and axillary lymph nodes; to modified radical mastectomy in which no muscles are removed; and to breast-conserving therapy, which combines lumpectomy and axillary lymph node dissection, followed by radiation of the breast. Studies comparing the psychological impact of mastectomy and conserving therapy show advantages fo

The Dramaturgical Approach: Linking Subjectivity, Self-Presentation and the State

Brian J. McVeigh

Source: Wearing Ideology. State, Schooling and Self-Presentation in Japan 2000

Book chapter

A “scene” is the background or situation in which an act or practice occurs. But backgrounds and situations are socially designed, manipulated and shaped by local understandings of human nature, social dynamics and cultural preferences. Moreover, scenes, whether educational, occupational, or kinrelated, are embedded in larger sociopolitical systems and are linked (some more firmly than others) to politico-economic projects.

Learning to Wear Ideology: School Uniforms

Brian J. McVeigh

Source: Wearing Ideology. State, Schooling and Self-Presentation in Japan 2000

Book chapter

Most nursery schools, kindergartens, elementary, middle and high schools have student uniforms (gakusei fuku) (or at least regulations about attire). Uniforms are intended to provide order, discipline and solidarity within a school. Other examples of material culture that express “school spirit” (kôfû) are school pins (kôshô) and, of course, school uniforms (kôfuku). Likewise, nursery schools, kindergartens and some elementary schools mandate seibô (school cap; literally, “regulation cap”). Some

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