IMC 2013: Sessions

Session 1708: DISTAFF, III: The Pleasure and Morality of Dress and Textiles

Thursday 4 July 2013, 14.15-15.45

Sponsor:DISTAFF: Discussion, Interpretation & Study of Textile Arts, Fabrics & Fashion Session
Organiser:Gale R. Owen-Crocker, School of Arts, Languages & Cultures, University of Manchester
Moderator/Chair:Elizabeth Coatsworth, now retired
Paper 1708-aUnholy Pleasures: Displeasure and Pleasure in Worldly Dress in Anglo-Saxon Hagiographical Tradition
(Language: English)
Maren Clegg Hyer, Department of English, Valdosta State University, Georgia
Index terms: Hagiography, Language and Literature - Old English, Language and Literature - Latin
Paper 1708-bWomen's Head-Dresses in Welsh Love Poems
(Language: English)
Alaw Mai Edwards, Centre for Advanced Welsh & Celtic Studies, University of Wales, Aberystwyth
Index terms: Language and Literature - Other, Social History, Women's Studies
Paper 1708-cRenouncing Pleasure: Giving the Best to the Grave
(Language: English)
Gale R. Owen-Crocker, School of Arts, Languages & Cultures, University of Manchester
Index terms: Archaeology - Artefacts, Economics - Trade

Conflicting attitudes to dress and to textiles pervade medieval culture. The first paper opposes common contemporary attitudes towards worldly dress, to hagiographical counter-examples in the works of Byrhtferth of Ramsey and William of Malmesbury. The second examines how, in Welsh poetry, a woman’s head-dress can create tension between self-pride and natural beauty, pleasure and frustration, honour and humility. The third explores the phenomenon of luxurious dress accessories and expensive textiles, beautiful and exclusive artefacts, being deposited in graves in acts of renunciation and veneration.