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The Social World of Cloth in the Pacific Islands

Susanne Küchler and Graeme Were

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Portable, malleable, absorbent, and textured, often with colored patterns that attract or repel the mind, cloth the world over is essential for all manner of fastenings and constructions that give form to the social relations that are conceived as dependent upon the actions of the body. Pacific societies are unique in expressing, perhaps more fervently than observed elsewhere, the centrality of cloth to identities of kinship and political authority, as cloth is harnessed and transformed into surf

Women’s Cooperatives and Self-Help Artists

Kimberly Miller and Brenda Schmahmann

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

During the 1980s and 1990s, a number of art-making cooperatives were set up to address the dire poverty of communities in South Africa as well as so-called homelands such as Gazankulu and Bophuthatswana. Some catered to men and women, coupling an imperative to generate income for members with an agenda to protest against apartheid through the creation of art. The majority, however, catered specifically to women who, in addition to being denied human rights and economic opportunities through apart

Biographies in Dress

Emma Tarlo

Source: Visibly Muslim. Fashion, Politics, Faith 4th Edition 2010

Book chapter

Rezia Wahid’s biography demonstrates the breadth and combination of ideological, sensual and visual resources on which she has drawn in the development of her personal aesthetic in dress and textile art. It is an aesthetic born chiefly out of the creative interplay of distant memories of Bangladesh and concrete experiences of Britain and Islam.

Living National Treasures: Textile and Garment Artists

Yoshiko I. Wada

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. East Asia 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The designation “Living National Treasure” is a Japanese expression of reverence for the highest level of a skill or technique in traditional arts and crafts, including traditional textiles and dress types. The system was initiated to preserve and continue important cultural properties and assets significant to Japan’s rich cultural heritage. The law designates a selected skill of an individual or group as an object for protection.

Representations of Tradition in Latin American Boundary Textile Art

Elyse Demaray, Melody Keim-Shenk and Mary A. Littrell

Source: The Latin American Fashion Reader 2005

Book chapter

“Tradition,” is an elusive term that scholars understand in different and often conflicting ways. Some of the primary questions involved in determining the precise meaning of tradition as it relates to boundary textiles include the following: when we speak of traditional textiles, are we referring to designs, colors, fibers, the means of production or all of these elements from the past? How can we determine when a “tradition” began? How long does a design, color, fiber, or technology have to per

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