Virtual Middlebury

Open to the Public

This talk came out of a winter-term class inspired by works in local collections and explores the meanings of hair in American culture, past and present. Nineteenth-century Americans often saved or exchanged locks of hair as mementos, constructing elaborate items of jewelry or keepsake wreaths that embodied familial relationships and kinship networks. These tokens could serve memorial purposes or solidify friendships. This material, crafted from the body, was often worn on the body, near the heart, or displayed within the intimate space of the home. In more recent decades, hair has become a potent political medium for artists highlighting feminism and ethnic or racial identity.

Ellery Foutch (B.A., Wellesley College; M.A., Williams College Graduate Program in the History of Art; PhD, University of Pennsylvania) is an assistant professor in the American Studies department at Middlebury College, where she teaches classes on the art and material culture of the United States. She has also held postdoctoral teaching fellowships at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Courtauld Institute of Art.

Hosted by Caitlin Myers, John G. McCullough Professor of Economics.

Please visit the Faculty at Home website for more information and to register for this free event.

Sponsored by:
Provost's Office; Office of College Advancement

Contact Organizer

Borden, Gail A.