Call for Papers

In line with the recent academic interest in comprehending Irish history through visual and material practices, this seminar opens up debate about fashion and clothing cultures in and of Ireland during the twentieth and twenty-first century. 

What do fashion, style, clothing and various ‘embodied states’ reveal about Irish culture and society since 1900? Interrupted by revolution, civil war and the creation of a new state, Ireland’s modernity was nonetheless vibrant, reflected in its cultural, economic and political life. Clothing, textiles and styles of self-presentation mark key moments in Irish history and this seminar will bring together researchers to reflect on how and why they translated into potent images and objects that circulated at home and abroad. Moving away from centre-periphery arguments that have framed understandings of European modernity we welcome papers that highlight the global influence of Irish fashion but also those concerning local style cultures from beyond the field of consumer fashion. We particularly welcome new perspectives, voices and directions in assessing the rich vestimentary cultures of modern Ireland. The seminar explores various cultural practices, encompassing questions of leisure, conflict, governance, trauma, race and migration, social class, gender and sexuality to assess the under-researched role of clothing cultures in shaping Irish public life. 

Topics might include but are not limited to:

Dress in Irish Political Culture and State Building;

Clothing practice within distinct communities: Heritage, Tradition and  Group Identities;

Legacies and Afterlives of the Irish textile industry: Design, Objecthood and Making;

The role of dress in Irish Revolutionary conflict;

Clothing in Carceral Institutions;

Consumerism and the Magazine;

Partition and Northern Ireland;

State-sponsored design projects;

Uniforms of Irish Youth Movements;

The rise of the Department Store in Ireland;

Ireland on Screen: costume for cinema and television;

Sport, Clothing and Nationalism;

Irish fashion designers;

Social movements and clothing as street spectacle;

Irish Youth Subcultures: music and style;

Fashion in Irish Art and Architecture;

Textiles and ‘affect’ in remembering Crisis and Trauma;

Transnationality and Diasporic Fashion practices;

Representations of sartorial modernity in Irish Literature;

Digital storytelling and Irish style cultures;

Self-fashioning and Sartorial Biographies: Inventing Irishness.   

Send an abstract of not more than 300 words to Jane Tynan and Rachel Hynes by the deadline: 15 January 2021. 

The abstract should include the Title of Paper, Author(s), Corresponding Author Affiliation(s), and a 300-word abstract in no less than 12 point font. Please send in Microsoft Word format to email address: