«You should give it a try...»
Back in , I was flipping through the channels on a hotel TV, when I landed on the Sundance Channel as they were airing a special about the history of the bikini. Something that now seems somewhat mundane caused a virtual riot with its inception. The history of the bikini is a classic tale of the patriarchy at work; suppression, objectification, and constant judgment. These looks were worn during practice, as well as competition, and consisted of essentially bandeaus and bikini bottoms.
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The Evolution of the Swimsuit
Cultural History of the Swimsuit - The Evolution of the Swimsuit
When summer rolls around, many find themselves hitting the beach or pool in tiny, revealing suits. However, the modern concept of the swimsuit has come a long way from the style's original inception. In fact, the swimsuits of the 19th and early 20th centuries are almost unrecognizable compared to the strings, ties, and cuts of 's most popular bathing suit looks. So, how did a baggy cloth swimming costume transition into itty-bitty triangles and barely-there bottoms? Here, CR chronicles the history of female swimwear, from bloomers to Baywatch. Before swimming became a socially acceptable leisure activity, bathing took place in the nude at indoor pools, like in this depiction of a Pompeian public bath. Women's bathing costumes weren't introduced until the 17th century, but then became the norm as female modesty was a defining factor of women's dress.
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A History of Women’s Swimwear
History of swimwear traces the changes in the styles of men's and women's swimwear over time and between cultures, and touches on the social, religious and legal attitudes to swimming and swimwear. In classical antiquity and in most cultures, swimming was either in the nude or the swimmer would merely strip to their underwear. In the Renaissance , swimming was strongly discouraged, and into the 18th century swimming was regarded as of doubtful morality, and had to be justified on health grounds. In the Victorian era swimwear was of a style of outer clothing of the time, which were cumbersome and even dangerous in the water, especially in the case of dress-style swimwear for women.
Posted by Fiona Ibbetson Last updated Sep 24, Published on Sep 24, 18th century , 19th century , 20th century , 21st century , thematic essays. S wimwear is loosely defined as a category of garment often worn when participating in aquatic activities, such as swimming or bathing. Swimwear is expected to fulfil varying requirements.