title={THE “FREEDOM SUIT”:},
  author={Amy Vita Kesselman},
  journal={Gender \& Society},
  pages={495 - 510}
  • A. Kesselman
  • Published 1 December 1991
  • Political Science, History
  • Gender & Society
The dress-reform movement, often misrepresented as a fad of women's rights leaders, was in fact a distinct movement with roots in nineteenth-century health reform. It represents a different brand of feminism from that of the women's rights movement and a “road not taken” by nineteenth-century feminism. Dress reformers were committed to an exemplary action model of social change that assumed that a few intrepid individuals who had the courage to live according to principle could inspire enough… 

The Lily and its impact on feminist thought in nineteenth century America

Editor Amelia Bloomer created controversy through her nineteenth century periodical—The Lily—which started out as a temperance journal but quickly came to include women’s rights issues. Her influence

Dress reform and the feminine ideal: Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the “coming girl”

Although largely overlooked by scholars, “Our Girls” (1872) was Elizabeth Cady Stanton ‘s most popular lyceum lecture and one of her most radical public speeches. Simultaneously appropriating and

Contested identities: Historical critique of dress as a communication symbol

This article discusses the historical associations of dress as a significant symbol of communication in society. Particular attention is given to women within the African and Western contexts in

“A Strong-Minded American Lady”: Bloomerism in Texts and Images, 1851

Abstract This paper offers new perspectives on the reception of the women’s dress reform movement in Britain and North America. Focusing on a central case study of a satirical letter and accompanying

She Wears the Pants: The Reform Dress as Technology in Nineteenth-Century America

The American dress-reform movement is examined, detailing the ways in which reformers conceptualized clothing as a social and bodily technology and broader tensions in an industrializing American society, such as changing gender relations and new understandings of the relationship between humans and technology.

‘Bloomers’ and the British World: Dress Reform in Transatlantic and Antipodean Print Culture, 1851–1950

Abstract The ‘bloomers’ are rarely considered beyond their 1851 origins in the United States and subsequent appearance in Britain. This article expands dress reform scholarship by analysing print

The “Hybrid Hero” in Western Dime Novels

The purpose of this narrative inquiry was to explore how dress - including cross-dressing and androgynous dress - was used within the Deadwood Dick series to construct meanings about gender and

The politics of female pain: women's citizenship, twilight sleep and the early birth control movement.

The medical intervention of ‘twilight sleep’, or the use of a scopolamine–morphine mixture to anaesthetise labouring women, caused a furore among doctors and early 20th-century feminists. Suffragists

The politics of female pain: women’s citizenship, twilight sleep and the early birth control movement

The feminist political arguments for the method are repositions as an important precursor for the rhetoric of the early birth control movement, led by Mary Ware Dennett and Margaret Sanger.

QueerCrip fashion in the twenty-first century: Sky Cubacub and the QueerCrip Dress Reform Movement

Sky Cubacub, designer, artist and twenty-first century activist, based in Chicago, Illinois, creates garments and accessories for their fashion brand Rebirth Garments while critically considering



Prophetess of Health: A Study of Ellen G. White

Respected historian of science Ronald Numbers here examines one of the most influential, yet least examined, religious leaders in American history -- Ellen G. White, the enigmatic visionary who

The Making of the English Working Class.

Fifty years since first publication, E. P. Thompson's revolutionary account of working-class culture and ideals is published in Penguin Modern Classics, with a new introduction by historian Michael

Wash and Be Healed: The Water-Cure Movement and Women's Health

Hydropathy and the Reform Movements: Women at the Cures: Rest for the Weary Activist Conclusion: Demise and Legacy of the Water-Cure Movement.

Life And Writings Of Amelia Bloomer

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