‘Dress and History Since 1965’ from Women Make Fashion/ Fashion Makes Women Conference, May 2015

Dr Rebecca Arnold delivering her paper at the ‘Women Make Fashion/ Fashion Make Women conference’

organisers Dr Rebecca Arnold, Liz Kutesko and Lucy Moyse

organisers Dr Rebecca Arnold, Liz Kutesko and Lucy Moyse

On 16 May we held our conference ‘Women Make Fashion/Fashion Makes Women,’ to celebrate our 50th Anniversary, and we wanted to share the introductory lecture ‘Dress and History since 1965,’ with our readers. This talk was given by Dr Rebecca Arnold, and was written in collaboration with the conference’s other organisers, and current PhD students, Lucy Moyse and Elizabeth Kutesko.

We’ve included some of the illustrations shown during the talk and also it’s abstract:

This talk considers the development of History of Dress at The Courtauld Institute since its inception in 1965, and the subject’s development and relationship to art history over this fifty year period. It will examine the context of History of Dress’ emergence as a discrete academic field and relate this to contemporary writing and scholarship on dress and fashion. Within this, the role of women will be analysed to situate our conference’s title ‘Women Make Fashion/Fashion Makes Women’, in relation to the discipline’s emergence, its reception and its sometimes contested significance and meaning within wider academia.
Dress History will be framed as a potentially radical and innovative way to rethink history, and art history, bringing to light new insights into a given period. The importance of dress and fashion to women, and the changing landscape of gender politics over this period sharpens our exploration of the History of Dress, and The Courtauld’s importance as its pioneer within the academy.

We hope you enjoy reading it!

‘Dress & History since 1965’ pdf

Images from the paper:

Four items currently displayed within the Dress Historiography: 500 Years of Fashion Books exhibition, The Courtauld Institute

Four items currently displayed within the Dress Historiography: 500 Years of Fashion Books exhibition, The Courtauld Institute

nvoice to Dodie Smith, Stella Mary Newton (née Pearce) Haute Couture, 1934

nvoice to Dodie Smith, Stella Mary Newton (née Pearce) Haute Couture, 1934

Professor Aileen Ribeiro photographed with the Harris Textiles Collection in the 1970s

Professor Aileen Ribeiro photographed with the Harris Textiles Collection in the 1970s

MA students examining an 18th century stomacher, Harris Textiles Collection

MA students examining an 18th century stomacher, Harris Textiles Collection

Professor Joanna Woodall speaking at the Helene Fourment Study Day, The Courtauld, April 2015

Professor Joanna Woodall speaking at the Helene Fourment Study Day, The Courtauld, April 2015

MA students looking at items in store at Museum at FIT, during a study trip to New York City

MA students looking at items in store at Museum at FIT, during a study trip to New York City

PhD student Alexis Romano preparing the Winter Mode exhibition

PhD student Alexis Romano preparing the Winter Mode exhibition

nstagram post of an Addressing Images Even

nstagram post of an Addressing Images Even