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Revolutionary Relics: Survival and Consecration

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Abstract:

Revolutionary dress played a visible and highly symbolic role in festivals and new species of political ritual and official procedure. This article tracks this usage, and the subsequent fate of such politicised forms of dress, as they fell victim to successive political regimes. Old clothes had a powerful function as bearers of memory and guarantors of a sometimes proscribed tradition. Collecting, as both an institutional and private activity, is discussed, and how this fed into evolving exhbition culture in 19th-century France. The origins of the Musée Carnavalet in Paris are considered in terms of the place of dress in the origins of the collections, as is the cult of Napoleon, manifest in the Musée de l'Armée, and the Brunon collection in Salon, Provence.

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.2752/136270402778869073

Publication date: May 1, 2002

More about this publication?
  • Fashion Theory takes as its starting point a definition of “fashion” as the cultural construction of the embodied identity. The importance of studying the body as a site for the deployment of discourses has been well established in a number of disciplines. Until Fashion Theorys launch in 1997 the dressed body had suffered from a lack of critical analysis. Increasingly scholars have recognized the cultural significance of self-fashioning, including not only clothing but also such body alterations as tattooing and piercing.

    Fashion Theory provides an international and interdisciplinary forum for the rigorous analysis of cultural phenomena. Its peer-reviewed articles range from foot-binding to fashion advertising.
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