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Fashion, Modernity, and Materiality in France
From Rousseau to Art Deco
Fashion, Modernity, and Materiality in France

Heidi Brevik-Zender - Editor
Price: $90.00 
Hardcover - 224 pages
Release Date: December 2018
ISBN13: 978-1-4384-7235-5



An interdisciplinary examination of French fashion, modernity, and materiality from the eighteenth to the early twentieth centuries.

This anthology explores connections between dress and modernity through interdisciplinary French humanities scholarship. It brings to life the reciprocal relationships between fashion and a range of primary source materials, including literary fiction, paintings, social commentaries, decorative arts, fashion magazines, mass-circulating newspapers, popular theatrical works, trade publications, and advertisements, among others. The book centers on a specific constellation of concerns—fashion, modernity, and materiality from the eighteenth to the early twentieth centuries—giving depth of focus. Themes include fashion’s relationship to the arts, material production, conflict, memory, the nation, social class, race, and gender and sexuality. Among the broader questions framing the volume are some that remain highly pertinent today: What are the various and complex relationships that exist between clothing and the lived body? How do garments hold traces of the past and activate memories of the human experience? In which ways do clothing and adornment express sexualities? How does fashion help to define what it meant and means to be modern? Together, the essays demonstrate fashion’s broad reach and appeal as an interdisciplinary category of analysis.

“The essays in this collection establish a constellation of strong and rich French fashion notes in modern history, and together constitute a dynamic that resonates with recurring and related imagery and ideas. The fact that it’s conceptually sophisticated and philosophical doesn’t get in the way of it being a good read.” — Brian Seitz, author of Intersubjectivity and the Double: Troubled Matters

Heidi Brevik-Zender is Associate Professor of French and Comparative Literature at the University of California, Riverside and the author of Fashioning Spaces: Mode and Modernity in Late-Nineteenth-Century Paris.

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