Skip to main content

Distributed for Intellect Ltd

Crossing Gender Boundaries

Fashion to Create, Disrupt and Transcend

Distributed for Intellect Ltd

Crossing Gender Boundaries

Fashion to Create, Disrupt and Transcend

This volume presents a collection of the most recent knowledge on the relationship between gender and fashion in historical and contemporary contexts. Through fourteen essays divided into three segments—how dress creates, disrupts, and transcends gender—the essays investigate gender issues through the lens of fashion. Crossing Gender Boundaries first examines how clothing has been, and continues to be, used to create and maintain the binary gender division that has come to permeate Western and westernized cultures. Next, it explores how dress can be used to contest and subvert binary gender expectations, before a final section that considers the meaning of gender and how dress can transcend it, focusing on unisex and genderless clothing.

The essays consider how fashion can both constrict and free gender expression, explore the ways dress and gender are products of one other, and illuminate the construction of gender through social norms. Readers will find that through analysis of the relationship between gender and fashion, they gain a better understanding of the world around them.

225 pages | 23 halftones | 6 3/4 x 9 3/4


Gender and Sexuality

Intellect Ltd image

View all books from Intellect Ltd


"This volume examine[s] the significance of dress and fashion for creating and transcending binary gender distinctions. The studies it comprises represent diverse case studies that explore how dress constructs gender as a situated, appearance- and performance-mediated bodily practice. The panoramic overview of historical and contemporary examples in which gender boundaries maintained or crossed through dress and fashion also guides the structure of this book. . . . [It] highlights how dress and gender are mutually constructive. As the Western concept of gender becomes challenged, redefined and reexamined, this timely volume examines gender- and dress-related issues, while highlighting how gender can be created, disrupted and transcended using fashion clothing, personal style and fashion accessories."

Pablo Markin, Open Culture

"This collection of essays is timely and innovative, drawing on a range of theoretical and methodological frameworks to understand and show the role that fashion and dress have in crossing gender boundaries. . . . [It] is exemplary, not only in terms of its content, but also in terms of its form. Scholars thinking about putting together an edited collection may look toward Crossing Gender Boundaries as an example of an excellent edited collection. The essays work well together, but also work well in isolation. This is an impressive collection that recognizes the importance of diversity in the study of fashion, and I am confident that Crossing Gender Boundaries will spark new debates in the ongoing and important critical study of fashion, which is central to how many think about bodies, sexualities, and masculinities."

Jonathan A. Allan, Journal of Bodies, Sexualities, and Masculinities

"The wide range of topics collated by Reilly and Barry gives an extremely interesting overview of both personal and public aspects of the relationship between gender and dress. Chapters range from personal accounts to theoretical and cover both well known and more niche, potentially less well known, designers and fashion trends. . . . Crossing Gender Boundaries is a book which will be attractive to those whose research and interests are in several different fields whether that be historical fashion, contemporary fashion, gender studies, or cultural studies. In fact, this book is such an enjoyable read and is readily accessible that it may even be of interest to the general reader."

Jennifer Cameron, Journal of Dress History

"Augments the larger body of scholarship on the topic of gender and dress by adding a variety of study areas that are missing from the existing largely white, heteronormative European–American focused literature. . . . This volume is certainly a must-read for readers interested in exploring gender construction—and deconstruction—in fashion studies."

Lauren Bradley, Critical Studies in Fashion & Beauty

Be the first to know

Get the latest updates on new releases, special offers, and media highlights when you subscribe to our email lists!

Sign up here for updates about the Press