This free program is virtual. Donations are appreciated.
Registration is required. Eventbrite will provide you with a link to join the live virtual program via email- keep an eye on your spambox.
We are pleased to offer an in-person option for the viewing of this program. Interested patrons may register for an in-person ticket at check out and come to the GAHC on May 23rd at 2pm to watch the program streamed on the big screen in the community room on the 4th floor. Seating is limited and socially distanced. Masking is required.
About the program:
In Nazi Germany, female fashioning was political. If it is true that clothes are “a poster for one’s act,” then the Third Reich put several fashion posters on display – the folk costume (Tracht), the uniform, the latest modern fashion tied to international trends, or an often conflicting conglomeration thereof. Examining the Third Reich through the window of women’s clothing is revelatory. Clothing served as a means to visibly convey many of the notions spewed by the Nazis’ propaganda machine. Women’s clothing was utilized to support and implement Nazi gender ideology and anti-Semitism. It was employed to enhance the power and status of the regime, as well as to consolidate society and manipulate behavior. Additionally, women’s clothes provided a tangible sign of inclusion in and exclusion from the racially-constructed national community. What women wore or were required to wear and how they chose to fashion themselves spoke volumes in Nazi Germany.
About the presenter:
Irene Guenther specializes in 20th-century American and European history. She received her doctorate from the University of Texas. Her teaching interests include genocide and human rights, the construction of ‘race’ and the consequences of systemic racism in the United States, Nazi cultural policies, and comparative Second World War home fronts. She has published on the Nazi takeover of the German-Jewish fashion industry; the contested politics of women’s clothing in the four occupied zones of Germany after World War II; Magical Realism from 1920s Germany to 1940s Latin America; and the German anti-war artists of the First World War. Her first book, Nazi ‘Chic’? Fashioning Women in the Third Reich, won the Costume Society of America’s Millia Davenport Award for ‘best fashion history book’ of the year and the Sierra Prize, given by the Western Association of Women Historians. Her second book, Postcards from the Trenches: A German Soldier’s Testimony of the Great War, was published in late 2018 and was accompanied by a centennial exhibition of WWI soldiers’ art, which traveled to Washington, DC, Houston, New York, and Berlin. She has received the Ross Lence Teaching Award, the Wong Student Engagement Award, the Lerner Family Faculty Award, the Honors College Dean’s Master Teacher Award, and the UH Provost’s Teaching Excellence Award.