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    “Red Taffeta Under Tweed”: the color of post-war clothes

    Nead, Lynda (2016) “Red Taffeta Under Tweed”: the color of post-war clothes. Fashion Theory 21 (4), pp. 365-389. ISSN 1362-704X.

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    In the years following the end of the Second World War and the passing of the 1948 British Nationality Act, the language of color was gradually and steadily harnessed to ideologies of race and nation, as chromatic hue and skin color became utterly imbricated. The relationship between the colors of clothing and skin are explored first through discussion of the naming and standardization of colors from the 1930s to the 1950s by the British Colour Council before turning to an analysis of the 1959 British Film, Sapphire, and its construction of racial identities through the semantics of hue, dress and appearance. These ideas were disseminated not only through visual culture, but also through the expertise of social scientists and in journalism, popular psychology, and many forms of visual media. Choice of clothing styles and colors was believed to expose innate racial traits and preferences, defining both the restrained, neutral look of the white nation and the sexualized and dangerous excesses of the new black African and Caribbean immigrants.


    Item Type: Article
    Additional Information: This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis, available online at the link above.
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): color, post-war Britain, Sapphire, immigration, race
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > School of Historical Studies
    Depositing User: Administrator
    Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2020 13:00
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 17:56


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