HHIK08743U Textile and Fashion in Theory and Practice through 3000 years

Volume 2017/2018

Historical core area 2: Academic writing with focus on source analysis (HHIK03741E) [Curriculum for Master´s Programme in History, 2015-Curriculum]

Historical core area 2: Academic writing with focus on source analysis (HHIK03741E) [Curriculum for the Master’s Minor in History, 2015-Curriculum]

Module T5: Historical Project (HHIB10511E) [Curriculum for Bachelor´s Elective Programme in History, 2013-Curriculum]


Textile and Fashion in Theory and Practice through 3000 Years
An interdisciplinary course of Archaeology, History, European Ethnology and Fashion Studies at the Saxo Institute, University of Copenhagen

Textiles and fashion are essential aspects of the human condition. We dress, appear and communicate through fabrics and other kinds of body adornments. However, over the course of time, we have changed practices for production, mediation and the use of textiles and fashion, as well as theories through which to conceive fashion and textile. The TFTP summer school provides a survey of the history of textile and fashion from prehistoric time to the present in the geographical areas of Scandinavia, Europe and the Middle East.

Focused on different historic and cultural theories, the course further emphasizes the introduction of critical and analytical approaches to understand the subject field and, in the wider context, understanding the entanglement of fashion and textile in constituting cultures and societies. The summer school course is taught by excellent fashion and textile researchers and surveys the interdisciplinary field of textiles and fashion from the Bronze Age until today. In each module, there will be texts and course material related to textiles and fashion, backed up with readings of essential classical works of theory and methods. In this course, students will be introduced to the analysis of textiles and textile technology as well as how new scientific methods and theoretical approaches can be applied to textile research and fashion studies. Furthermore, emphasis is on the theories and practice of cultural studies. The course will cover a wide chronological and geographic area from Scandinavia to the Mediterranean, the Middle East and the New World. The summer school is composed of six modules interweaving the themes of textile techniques and craft, knitting technology and history, new analytical tools from the sciences used in the humanities and in textile research, and the interpretation and multiple meanings of dress and fashion in society, as markers of status, identity and power, or as gendered gifts.

Students must be prepared for a considerable amount of reading before the course.

Course structure:

Science and the Humanities at a new crossroads: Analytical tools for Organic Material Studies
There is now a wide variety of innovative scientific tools available for the study of ancient and historical organic materials. These draw on pioneering work in medicine and industry to reveal new findings from archaeological evidence such as garments and footwear. Raw materials including wool, hair, flax, leather, bone, teeth and feathers are revealing revolutionary insights for scholars working in the humanities. These also offer new challenges for those developing scientific methods with forensic applications in non-traditional arenas. This module introduces these scientific techniques and explores how they are applied to textiles and other organic materials in the fields of archaeology, history, ethnology, anthropology and beyond. It looks at how the technologies have evolved from their initial applications to offer new perspectives in the humanities.
Tutors: Jane Malcolm-Davies, Christina Margariti
Activities: Lectures, problem-based learning workshops, analytical work with microscopes and other digital tools

Early Modern Knitting in Europe: materials and methods
The development of knitting was a key technological innovation for which there is little published scientific evidence. This module draws on a study of more than 100 knitted caps from the early modern era in museum collections. Despite their diverse locations, they have remarkable similarities in their materials and manufacture which illustrate trade in knitted caps as consumer goods in the emerging early modern European marketplace, demonstrate how knitting created new fashions for men indicative of rank and status, and facilitate theory on the cultural significance of the hat as an essential male accessory. 
Tutor: Jane Malcolm-Davies and guest lecturers
Activities: Lectures, problem-based learning workshops, knitting techniques, analysis of early modern knitted material

Textiles in Antiquity (Egypt, Greece, Roman world)
Tutors: Cecilie Brøns, Marie-Louise Nosch, Magdalena Öhrman, Elza Yvanez, Maria Mossakowska-Gaubert
Activities: Lectures, assignments, tapestry experience, visit to the National Museum of Denmark and the Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek

Textile production and textile tools
In this module, students will gain insights into how the production of textiles can be studied and interpreted in different societies (for example, in Greece, Egypt, Scandinavia) and time periods (ancient Greece, late antique Egypt and Early Medieval Europe). They will also be introduced to textile technology via hands-on practice.
Teachers: Eva Andersson Strand, Maria Mossakowska-Gaubert, Magdalena Öhrmann
Activites: Experimental archaeology, Lejre visit, practical work sessions.

Fashion, culture and identity
In this module, the students will learn about different theoretical understandings of fashion and the history of fashion in the modern and postmodern world. An interdisciplinary approach to the contested field of fashion studies is emphasized. Students will explore the various methods from semiotic readings to ethnographic descriptions and interpretations. The aim of the module is for students to develop critical, analytical thinking through fashion as one approach to the study of culture and society.
Tutors: Marie Riegels Melchior, Jane Malcolm-Davies.
Activities: Micro-ethnographic field studies, representational studies of fashion imagery, visit museums.

Course objectives (clarification of some of the objectives stipulated in the curriculum):
After the course students will be able to:
• have knowledge and understanding of the historical dimension to textile and fashion production, mediation and use
• have knowledge and understanding of the prevalent theories of textile and fashion across disciplinary boundaries of archeology, history, ethnology and fashion studies
• have knowledge of various types of important primary sources about this history of textiles and fashion
• have knowledge of methods underlying the theories of the above mentioned
• present skills in critical analysis and evaluation of conflicting theories
• have a clear understanding of the methodologies and difficulties of handling different types of sources, with varying degrees of validity and quality
• have a technical and chronological overview of textile techniques
• have a hands-on approach to various textile techniques
• have skills in written dissemination of the subject matter and skills in formulating a thesis statement and expand it into an original paper for your end-of-summer school written assignment
• have competences in acting in a cross-disciplinary environment on the basis of the course teaching



The course is implemented only if a minimum of 20 students have registered and paid tuition fees by 1 May 2018
• Application deadline: 1 April 2018
- Second application deadline in case of available seats: 1 June 2018. Please note that applicants submitting their application after 1 April 2018 may not be able to get accommodation through the UCPH Housing Foundation.
• Application form: see  http://ctr.hum.ku.dk/courses_activities_and_facilities/ctr_courses/summer-school/2018/textiles-and-dress/
• Payment due: mid-April 2018
• Course: 2-13 July 2018
• Deadline for submission of take-home assignment: 31 August 2018

For further information, please contact:
Marie-Louise Nosch (academic content): nosch @ hum.ku.dk
Christian Thorup (admission and registration): chrthorup @ hum.ku.dk
Henrik Lerdam (exams/Curricula/Syllabus): lerdam @ hum.ku.dk 

For questions concerning tuition fees, visa invitations and accommodation in Copenhagen, please contact International Admissions, The Faculty of Humanities: gueststudents@hum.ku.dk or +45 40 47 11 97.
Tuition fees:  http://humanities.ku.dk/education/summer/#Tuition-fees
See also: http://studies.ku.dk/summer/ and  http://humanities.ku.dk/education/summer/

Lectures, group work, written assignments, museum visits, visits to fashion companies, interviews, reading, practical textile work, tests of textile techniques and controlled experiments in workshop, viewing fashion films. Practical work sessions in the evenings (knitting, crochet, embroidery and felting). Some sessions will be filmed with the purpose of creating a distance-learning program on ancient textiles, in association with the University of Wales. Magdalena Öhrman is directing this event.
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 104
  • Course Preparation
  • 203
  • Exam Preparation
  • 81,5
  • Total
  • 388,5