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Stitching the Self


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Table of Contents

List of Figures List of Plates List of Tables Notes on Contributors Acknowledgments Introduction: Stitching the self ... Johanna Amos and Lisa Binkley Part I: Emerging identity: Reconsidering the narratives of the needle 1 The identity of an embroidering woman: The needle arts in Brussels, Belgium, 1850-1914 Wendy Wiertz 2 "Experiments in silk and gold work afterwards to bloom": The embroidering of Jane Burden Morris Johanna Amos 3 Becoming the boss of your knitting: Elizabeth Zimmermann and the emergence of critical knitting M. Lilly Marsh 4 "Knitting is the saving of life; Adrian has taken it up too": Needlework, gender and the Bloomsbury group Joseph McBrinn Part II: Elaborating identity: Expressing ideology, crafting community 5 Whig's Defeat: Stitching settler culture, politics, and identity Lisa Binkley 6 "From Prison to Citizenship," 1910: The making and display of a suffragist banner Janice Helland 7 Our Lady of the Snows: Settlement, empire, and "the children of Canada" in the needlework of Mary Seton Watts (1848-1938) Elaine Cheasley Paterson Part III: Recovering Identity: Locating the self through needlework 8 "Je me declare Dieu-Mere, Femme Createur": Johanna Wintsch's needlework at the Swiss psychiatric asylums Burghoelzli and Rheinau, 1922-25 Sabine Wieber 9 Hybrid language: The interstitial stitches of Anna Torma's embroideries Anne Koval 10 Suturing my soul: In pursuit of the Broderie de Bayeux Janet Catherine Berlo Index

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This book explores the needle arts as a powerful way of articulating identity, focusing on narratives of creative intention in the West from 1850 to the present

About the Author

Johanna Amos is Assistant Professor (adjunct) of art, textile, and fashion history at Queen's University, Ontario, Canada Lisa Binkley is Assistant Professor in Material Culture, and Indigenous and Settler Women's Histories in the Department of History at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.


I found it fascinating ... the reading [is] intriguing and varied. I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in Art History as it relates to textiles. * Book Threads Magazine *
Stitching the Self considers historical textiles and the lives that made them. Diverse examples - from the English Bloomsbury group to a Swiss psychiatric asylum - show how textile making has long been used as an effective tool to craft personal and group identities. * Jessica Hemmings, University of Gothenburg, Sweden *
Needles are evocative tools of material expression. This collection reveals the freighted history and practice of needlework, whose signal importance is demonstrated across this engrossing volume. Makers from varied circumstances are showcased in compelling ways, challenging categories of artistic production. * Beverly Lemire, University of Alberta, Canada *
A diverse range of essays which richly illustrate the importance of needlecrafts in forging, reconstituting, recovering and reclaiming individual and collective identifies. Focusing on Europe and North America, the authors illuminate hidden histories, challenge gender stereotypes and disrupt art/craft and professional/amateur binaries. * Vivienne Richmond, Goldsmiths, University of London, UK *

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