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Workshop 1. Luxury Readings

Key Questions

  • What factors have led discourses about and practices of luxury to change at different historical moments?
  • How does luxury change when it is disseminated down the social scale?
  • What are the pitfalls of working across 'more than the longue duree'?
  • What are the benefits of working across cultures, for example, comparing western and eastern ideas and practices of luxury?
  • How have representations and rhetorics of artisanal skill related to the actual practice of luxury production?
  • What has been the relation between luxury and innovation, especially with regard to technology?

Key Readings

Goldthwaite, Richard, ‘The Economy of Renaissance Italy: The Preconditions for Luxury Consumption’, I Tatti Studies, vol. 2 (1987), pp. 15-39.

Carpenter, John T., ‘“Twisted” Poses: The Kabuku Aesthetic in Early Edo Genre Painting’, in Nicole Coodlidge Rousmaniere (ed.) Kazari: Decoration and Display in Japan 15th–19th Centuries, (London, 2002), 42–49. Reprinted with permission in P. McNeil (ed.), Critical and Primary Sources in Fashion, vol. 1 (Oxford, 2009).

Vries, Jan de, ‘Luxury in the Dutch Golden Age in Theory & Practice’, in Luxury in the Eighteenth Century, eds. Maxine Berg and Elizabeth Eger, Basingstoke, 2003, pp. 41-56.

Terrio, Susan J., 'Crafting Grand Cru Chocolates in Contemporary France', American Anthropologist, 98:1 (1996): 67-79.

Additional Readings

Assouly, Olivier, 'Le luxe, un art de la depense', Luxe Encyclopedie

Assouly, Olivier, and Pierre Bergé, eds., Le luxe: essais sur la fabrique de l’ostentation, Paris, 2005.

Berg, Maxine, ‘In Pursuit of Luxury: Global History and British Consumer Goods in the Eighteenth Century’, Past & Present 132 (2004), pp. 85-142.

Berg, Maxine, Luxury and Pleasure in Eighteenth-Century Britain, Oxford, 2005.

Berg, Maxine, ‘Luxury, the Luxury Trades, and the Roots of Industrial Growth: A Global Perspective’, in Handbook of the History of Consumption, ed. Frank Trentmann, Oxford, 2012, pp. 173-191.

Berry, Christopher J., The Idea of Luxury: A Conceptual and Historical Investigation, Cambridge, 1994, Chapter 1: ‘Luxury Goods’, pp. 3-45.

Breward, Christopher, Fashion, Oxford, 2003.

Cartier, C. ‘‘Class, Consumption and the Economic Restructuring of Consumer Space’, in D. S. G. Goodman and M. Chen, eds., The Middle Class in China,
(Edward Elgar, 2013), pp. 34-53

Cartier, C. ‘Production/Consumption and the Chinese City/Region: Cultural Political Economy and the Feminist Diamond Ring’, Urban Geography, 30(4) (2009): 368-390

Cartier, C., ‘The Shanghai-Hong Kong Connection: Fine Jewelry Consumption and the Demand for Diamonds’, in D. S. G. Goodman, ed., The New Rich in China, (London, 2008), pp. 187-200

Castarède, Jean, Le Luxe, Paris, 1992.

Chadha, Radha, and Paul Husband, The Cult of the Luxury Brand, London, 2006.

Clunas, Craig, Superfluous Things: Material Culture and Social Status in Early Modern China (Honolulu, 1991, 2004), pp. 141-65.

Crowley, John E, 'The Sensibility of Comfort', The American Historical Review, 104/3, (1999): 749-782.

Evans, Caroline, Fashion at the Edge, New Haven, 2003.

Ffoulkes, Fiona, 'Quality Always Distinguishes Itself: L.H. LeRoy and the luxury clothing industry in early nineteenth century Paris', in Berg, M. & Clifford, H. (eds.) Consumers and Luxury: consumer culture in Europe 1650-1850, Manchester, 1999, 183-205.

Frank, Robert, Luxury Fever, Princeton, 2000.

Goldthwaite, Richard, 'The Empire of Things: Consumer Demand in Renaissance Italy', in Patronage, Art, and Society in Renaissance Italy, eds. Bill Kent and Pat Simions, Oxford, 1987, pp. 153-75.

Guerzoni, Guido and Gabriele Troilo, ‘Silk Purses out of Sows’ Ears: Mass Rarefaction of Consumption and the Emerging Consumer-Collector’, in The Active Consumer, ed. Marina Bianchi, London, 1998, pp. 174-98.

Gundle, Stephen, Glamour: A History, Oxford, 2008, Chapter 11, “Contemporary Glamour”, pp. 347-88.

Hayward, Maria, 'Luxury or magnificence? Dress at the court of Henry VIII', Costume, 30 (1996): 37-46.

Howell, Martha C., Commerce before Capitalism in Europe, 1300-1600, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010, Chapter 4: ‘The Dangers of Dress’, pp. 208-61.

Kovesi, Catherine, Sumptuary Law in Italy 1200-1500, Oxford, 2002.

Kovesi Killerby, Catherine '"Heralds of a Well-Instructed Mind": Nicolosa Sanuti's Defence of Women and Their Clothes', Renaissance Studies, 13.3 (1999),
pp. 255-82

Marchand, Stéphane, Les guerres du luxe, Paris, 2001.

Mosher Stuart, Susan, Gilding the Market: Luxury and Fashion in Fourteenth-Century Italy, Philadelphia, 2006.

Muzzarelli, Maria Giuseppina and Antonella Campanini, eds., Disciplinare il lusso: la legislazione suntuaria in Italia e in Europa tra Medioevo ed Età moderna, Rome, 2003.

O’Malley, Michelle and Evelyn Welch, eds., The Material Renaissance, Manchester, 2007.

Peck, Linda Levy, Consuming Splendor: Society and Culture in Seventeenth-Century England, Cambridge, 2005.

Perrot, Philippe, Le luxe: Une richesse entre faste et confort, XIIIe-XIXe siècle, Paris, 1995.

Pointon, Marcia R., Brilliant Effects: A Cultural History of Gem Stones and Jewellery, New Haven, 2009.

Rublack, Ulinka, Dressing Up: Cultural Identity in Renaissance Europe, Oxford, 2010.

Sargentson, Carolyn, Merchants and Luxury Markets. The Marchands Merciers of Eighteenth-Century Paris. London, 1996.

Skov, Lise, 'The return of the fur coat: a commodity chain perspective', Current Sociology, 53:1 (2005), 9-32

Stearns, Peter, Consumerism in World History: The Global Transformation of Desire, New York, 2001, Chapter 2: 'The Emergence of Consumerism', pp. 15-24.

Thomas, Dana, Deluxe: How Luxury Lost its Lustre, London, 2008.

Thomson, David, Renaissance architecture: critics, patrons, luxury, Manchester, 1993.

Trentmann, Frank, 'The Modern Genealogy of the Consumer: Meanings, Identities and Political Synapses', in Consuming Cultures Global Perspectives: Historical Trajectories, Transnational Exchanges,eds. John Brewer and Frank Trentmann, Oxford and New York, 2006, pp. 19-70.

Welch, Evelyn, 'Public Magnificence and Private Display: Giovanni Pontano's De Splendore (1498) and the Domestic Arts', Journal of Design History 15:4 (2002): 211-221.