Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology & the Ancient World
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Posted at Oct 02/2008 05:01PM:
chris witmore: Hi Dean, So much comes to mind here. The umbrella connects with issues of comfort, fashion, and weather. It is even deployed as a common metaphor. I would like to discuss your angle and perhaps we can focus in on some possible readings.
My project will be centered around defining and displaying the role The Umbrella has played throughout time. It will start with the the most traditional of definitions in the earliest of times and I will make my way through time and civilizations analyzing the role of The Umbrella, its presence in that time and society and how it has transformed throughout that period of its' existence to become the phenomena that it is now.
--I haven't found many texts explicitly talking about The Umbrella, but there are a few excerpts about civilizations and the role The Umbrella played in social terms (these usually start in Europe, but a few are seen earlier). However, although I haven't yet found as many texts as I'd like, Umbrellas are depicted in all kinds of artwork throughout time that depict enough about their use, importance, design (functionally and artistically), etc... It will be interesting to compare the different times' and societies' versions of what The Umbrella's definition and function are and how they contributed our modern interpretations.
In addition, I plan to research into many more areas and vantage points from which i can dissect The Umbrella. One reason for this is i think it will be beneficial for my overall project. Another, is that to have "completeness" of any object you must look at it through all lenses and perspectives holistically, which is agreeably a very broad sense, but I believe an important one. I will try to be as concise as possible, but try to include, in an organized way (i havent broken down into organizational sectors or subdivisions just yet), everything that is The Umbrella.
Further Research: Fashion, Production, Materials, Tradition Use v. Other Types (parasol, metaphor, etc...), Structure, Status, Comfort, Customization, Reflection of Owner, its Rise/Fall/Stagnation, How perceived by people in different ways, thats about it for now.