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Morocco

Cynthia J. Becker

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

Encyclopedia entry

Morocco has long been a crossroads between Europe, the Middle East, and sub-Saharan Africa, and dress reflects the richness of its history as well as its geographic and cultural diversity. Forty to sixty percent of the Moroccan population is Berber, and many Berbers have retained their indigenous language. After the Phoenicians and then the Romans settled in Morocco and encountered the Berbers, Arabs moved into Morocco in the seventh century, founding the city of Fes and gradually converting the

Beaded and Embroidered Accessories of the Peranakan Chinese

Hwei-Fe’n Cheah

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

Encyclopedia entry

The Peranakan Chinese in insular Southeast Asia trace their ancestry to Chinese migrants who settled in the Indonesian archipelago and Malay peninsula beginning around the seventeenth century. Peranakan Chinese culture is a mix of Chinese and local elements. As Dutch and British colonial rules were reinforced in the Netherlands Indies and Malay Peninsula, European ideas significantly influenced Peranakan Chinese society in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The geographically dispersed

Overview of Taiwan

Ching-Yi Cheng and Hsu-Chun Su

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

Encyclopedia entry

The impact of Confucian philosophy on all aspects of Chinese life is evident in the attire of the Han people of Taiwan, specifically as regards the notion of the Doctrine of the Mean, which emphasizes personal introspection and emotional control, focused on cultural nurturing and the rejection of human vanity. Dress preserves modesty by covering the body and obscuring its shape. Importance is placed on inner beauty, the term for which literally means “charm”—the spiritual and cultural quality hop

Tunisia

Meriem Chida

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

Encyclopedia entry

Tunisia lies on the Mediterranean Sea, bordered by Libya and Algeria. The earliest inhabitants, called the Imazighen, spoke Berber languages and predated the Phoenicians, the Romans, the Vandals, the Byzantines, and the Arabs. Until the early seventh century, Imazighen women wore a draped dress like the Greek chiton and the Roman toga, fastened with silver fibulae, with a woolen or leather sash wrapped around the waist. In the seventh century, Arabs brought Islam to Tunisia and influenced local d

Overview: Hong Kong

Valery M. Garrett

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

Encyclopedia entry

Until the late twentieth century the British colony of Hong Kong remained detached from events in China, especially in the rural New Territories. Farmers, wearing traditional dress, grew rice and vegetables, while fishermen sold their catch in local ports. Working people wore hard-wearing, dark clothing suitable to their tough lives. Most wore practical jackets with loose trousers, hemp being a popular fabric. Symbolism is important in Chinese folklore, and children’s clothing was embroidered wit

Bridal Dress in Japan

Ofra Goldstein-Gidoni

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

Encyclopedia entry

Modern Japanese wear Western-style clothing (yôfuku). Japanese attire (wafuku) that is clearly distinguished from Western attire is worn mainly on ceremonial occasions, especially for life-cycle events such as weddings, funerals, and the coming-of-age ceremony (seijin shiki) celebrated at the age of twenty. Of all these occasions, the wedding ceremony is marked not only with the most elaborate traditional costumes but also with an unparalleled combination of Japanese and Western dress.

Ceremonial and Special-Occasion Dress

Michaele Thurgood Haynes

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

Encyclopedia entry

There is a difference between the terms ceremonial and special-occasion dress. The latter is an out-of-the-ordinary event, possibly unique. Societal conventions create parameters as to what is acceptable wear at these times, but personal clothing choices made by the participants help make it a special occasion. Ceremonial refers to repeated events occurring within a set framework, a somewhat rigid and formalized series of actions. In anthropological terms, a ceremony is generally more suitably na

Bridal Dress in Korea

Na Young Hong

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

Encyclopedia entry

Traditional Korean lifestyles began changing with the opening of Korea to the outside world in the late nineteenth century. The first Western wedding in Korea took place in 1890; it took nearly seventy years for most Koreans to accept this style. Traditional ceremonies began giving way to Western-style weddings with the inflow of Western culture into Korea since the mid-1950s. Pyebaek, part of the traditional ceremony in which brides kowtow to the grooms’ intimate elders, remained until the early

The Tradition of the Bridal Trousseau

Sumru Belger Krody

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

Encyclopedia entry

In Central and Southwest Asia, particularly in societies where older traditions are still strongly held, textiles took a prominent place among the gifts that the newly married couple would receive from family and friends. A young bride’s trousseau contained textiles produced for the wedding, such as decorations, hangings, canopies, and dowry-carrying cloths, textiles produced as gifts, and textiles to be used by the couple after the wedding, such as garments for the bride and her husband and text

Dress for Rites of Passage

Annette Lynch

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. The United States and Canada 2010

Encyclopedia entry

A rite of passage is a series of ritualized acts moving an individual from one stage of life to another, a formal and public marking of changing status and position within society. Rituals are repeated patterned actions that serve to reinforce and publicly announce beliefs and values to both the participating initiate and a culturally aware audience. Dress as a visible sign of social position is very often used within rites of passage as a public symbol of changing identity, and a means of expres

The Significance of Numbers in Dress

Phyllis Bell Miller

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

Encyclopedia entry

Throughout history and across various cultures, numbers have played various roles in dress. They may identify a person’s marital status, social standing, economic situation, age, gender, religion, political orientation, and other factors. Numbers related to dress may also protect an individual from evil forces or attract benevolent spirits. In addition, numbers have been used as a tool in textile design since ancient times, allowing the observer to make sense of patterns and motifs. Thus, numbers

Wedding Costume

Michelle Nordtorp-Madson

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

As of the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, the global, urbanized standard of wedding apparel has followed the Western tradition of a bride dressed in white or off-white, with a head-covering, whether a veil or head-piece, and carrying flowers, a book, or some other object. The groom is attired in keeping with the degree of formality of the bride. Attendants are generally present, the number, gender, age, and dress of whom being peculiar to each culture. Family members usually atte

Head, Edith

Clare Sauro

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

North Africa

Fred T. Smith

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

Encyclopedia entry

North Africa consists of Egypt in the east and the lands to the west, or Maghreb (the Arabic term for “the place of sunset”). Because of a rich archaeological record, a substantial amount of information exists on ancient Egyptian textiles. In ancient Egypt, loincloths and linen kilts with a belt were common items of male clothing, while women wore tight-fitting dresses or skirts. Women’s dresses became looser in the New Kingdom and were decorated with pleats and folds. Both sexes wore woolen cloa

Birth, Marriage, and Death

Gillian Vogelsang-Eastwood

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

Encyclopedia entry

Important rites of passage relate to dress in Southwest Asia; namely, engagement, marriage, birth, and death customs. Because of the region’s size and the many different ethnic and religious groups and numerous variations, only general descriptions are possible. In the West, the sequence of life events is usually listed as birth, marriage, and death. In contrast, among many Southwest Asian cultures, birth is regarded as a product of marriage; thus marriage, birth, and death is considered the “nat

Batik Dress of Java

Maria Wronska-Friend

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

Encyclopedia entry

Batik—a wax-resist dyeing technique used to produce a range of traditional garments, is a prominent feature of Javanese culture. Each of the major ethnic groups living on the island—Javanese, Sundanese, Chinese, Eurasian, and Arab, used batik textiles as markers of their identity and social status, which resulted in the development of several regional and ethnic styles. At the same time complex iconography, rich symbolic language, and the high accomplishment required to produce many of these text

Bridal Dress in China

Juanjuan Wu

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

Encyclopedia entry

Bridal dress, coupled with the wedding ceremony, has profound symbolic meanings in Chinese culture. Chinese wedding practices emphasize respect for family lineage and worship of natural elements to reach a desired harmony with social and natural environments. According to Confucius (551–479 b.c.e.), the essential relationship between father and son, as well as emperor and civic officials in Chinese society, stemmed from the more fundamental relationship between husband and wife. From even earlier

Double Dresses for Double Brides

Catherine Harper

Source: Fashion in Fiction. Text and Clothing in Literature, Film, and Television 2009

Book chapter

Awakening The Senses: The Aesthetics of Moroccan Berber Dress

Cynthia Becker

Source: Dress Sense. Emotional and Sensory Experiences of the Body and Clothes 2007

Book chapter

Book chapter

The dress associated with weddings teaches gender roles, instructing the bride what is expected of her in society. Although gender roles and opportunities continue to change for young Ait Khabbash women, the process of dressing the bride teaches her the ancestral values and behaviors expected of a married woman. The bride’s dressing ceremony refers to the night before the actual wedding and specifically designates the occasion when the bride is dressed in her wedding clothes. The act of dressing

Book chapter

I came to the study of wedding dresses as a daughter. The Fabrications project was my way of bridging the gap that distance, time and education had put between my mother and me. I used it to come to terms, intellectually and emotionally, with her skilled domestic labor, and the place this labor did or did not make for her in the world. As the exhibit developed, I became increasingly aware of the actual objects that Mom had created – her reality. One by one, out of boxes, trunks and closets, the w

Always Remembering the Motherland: Tai Dam Wedding Textiles and Dress

Elyse Demaray and Melody Keim-Shenk

Source: Wedding Dress Across Cultures 2003

Book chapter

In 1975, approximately 2,000 Tai Dam, or Black Tai, immigrated to Des Moines, Iowa, from refugee camps in Thailand. Before the Tai Dam fled to Thailand, they migrated from southern China to current-day northwest Vietnam in the seventh century AD, from northwest Vietnam to Laos in 1954, to Thailand, and subsequently to Des Moines in the mid-1970s. With each migration, the Tai Dam have had to negotiate their expression of ethnic identity in relation to the cultures where they lived.The Tai Dam are

Marriage and Dowry Customs of the Rabari of Kutch: Evolving Traditions

Eiluned Edwards

Source: Wedding Dress Across Cultures 2003

Book chapter

The Rabari are Hindu pastoralists who inhabit the desert region of Kutch district in the extreme west of Gujarat, where India borders Pakistan. There are three main subgroups of Rabari in the district: Kachhis in the central and western area, Dhebarias in the east and south-east, and Vagadias in the east and north-east. Their dress is distinguished by the signature use of black wool by the women and white cotton by the men. Much of it is decorated with elaborate hand embroidery (Figure 5.1). Raba

An Athenian Wedding, Year 2000

Helen Bradley Foster

Source: Wedding Dress Across Cultures 2003

Book chapter

A couple may not marry during Lent. With this exception, a wedding may take place in any month, with May, June and September being the popular choices primarily because of the fine weather. A wedding may be held on any day, but most occur on weekends, especially on Sundays, the day preferred by priests. Because of the limited number of Sundays, three or four marriages commonly take place on the same day in a religious ceremony that lasts about thirty minutes.

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