Clothing inventions as acts of citizenship? The politics of material participation, wearable technologies and women patentees in late Victorian Britain

Jungnickel, Katrina. 2021. Clothing inventions as acts of citizenship? The politics of material participation, wearable technologies and women patentees in late Victorian Britain. Science Technology & Human Values, ISSN 0162-2439 [Article] (In Press)

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Abstract or Description

This article is about clothing inventions, material participation, and acts of citizenship. I explore how pioneering Victorian women at the turn of last century inventively responded via clothing to restrictions to their (physical and ideological) freedom of movement. While the bicycle is typically celebrated as a primary vehicle of women’s emancipation at that time, I argue that inventive forms of clothing, such as convertible cycling skirts, also helped women make claims to rights and privileges otherwise legally denied to their sex. I ask: Do clothing inventions create possibilities to act differently? Can they be thought of as wearable technology, and in what ways do they (and their invention) enact political concerns? Might convertible cycling skirts be considered “acts of citizenship?” Throughout, I mobilize concepts of multiplicity, in-betweenness, and ambiguity to make a case for the relevance of clothing research for science and technology studies.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1177/01622439211044210

Additional Information:

Politics of Patents (2019-2024) is funded by a European Research Council consolidator grant #819458. Bikes and Bloomers, part of the Transmissions & Entanglements project, was supported by an Economic & Social Research Council Knowledge Exchange grant (ES/K008048/1).

Keywords:

clothes, cycling, gender, invention, patents, multiplicity, STS

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Sociology

Dates:

DateEvent
3 August 2021Accepted
14 September 2021Published Online

Item ID:

30409

Date Deposited:

09 Aug 2021 08:30

Last Modified:

20 Sep 2021 13:57

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

https://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/30409

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