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The way a society deals with hair speaks volumes about its structures, its wealth, and its values. How is hair arranged? Is it left long or cut short? How often is it washed? Do men and women treat their hair differently and what does this tell us about gender?
This stimulating book contains articles written by the Paris hairstylist Emile Long between December 1910 and December 1920 for an English trade journal. Long's purpose in writing was to keep English coiffeurs informed about the goings-on in the world of fashion and hairdressing in France, and especially in Paris. In doing so he has provided us with a personal cultural history of the world's most fashionable city in a period that stretches from the end of the Belle Epoque, through the First World War, and into the opening year of the Roaring Twenties. His investigation of hairstyles and fashion inevitably leads him to a fascinating discussion of important historical issues: the 'true' nature of Woman; the genesis and democratization of fashion; and popular attitudes towards hygiene. With his engaging literary style Long invites us to think about consumer habits and technology, notions of fashion and cleanliness, and changing ideals of femininity and the social order.
Students and scholars of history, fashion and French society will enjoy these rich and revealing accounts of what hair means to identity and culture.
Forty-three accurately rendered illustrations depict detailed scenes of kitchen chores (churning butter, preparing foods); seasonal occupations (shearing sheep, mowing hay, "harvesting" and "sugaring off" maple syrup); plowing, planting, other activities. Fact-filled captions. Published in association with Henry Ford Museum & Greenfield Village.
From its beginnings in the fifteenth century, intensified interest in fashion and the study of fashion over the last thirty years has led to a vast and varied literature on the subject. There is now barely a discipline in the humanities or social sciences that does not take a position on what fashion is, what it does and how it works.
This collection of essays surveys and contextualises the ways in which a wide range of disciplines, (including sociology, cultural studies, anthropology, fashion history, gender studies and cultural history), have used different theoretical approaches to explain, and sometimes to explain away, the astonishing variety, complexity and beauty of fashion. Themes covered include individual, social and gender identity, the erotic, consumption and communication.
Each extract is introduced, placed in its historical and theoretical context and its significance for fashion theory is explained.
By collecting together some of the most influential and important writers on fashion and exposing the ideas and theories behind what they say, this unique collection of extracts and essays brings to light the presuppositions involved in the things we think and say about fashion.
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