Moro girl embroidering

Doctoral project: Fashioning Philippine Muslims and the Multifaceted Global Archive

The PhD research project aims to write a Global Fashion History that starts locally in the Islamic parts of the Philippine archipelago.

The research project explores so-called “sartorial encounters” in the Southern Philippines during the late Spanish and early U.S. American empire. What can these cross-cultural encounters between Philippine Muslim, Spanish, and U.S. American actors tell us about power structures and dependencies? Or more generally speaking, how can a global approach to fashion uncover histories of coloniality?

Moro girl embroidering, ca. 1914-1915. Piang Studio Zamboanga.
Source: Meriam Library,  California State University, Chico.

Project information

Doctoral student
Tamara Ann Tinner
Stefan Eklöf Amirell
Assistant supervisor
Birgit Tremml-Werner
History (Department of Cultural Sciences, Faculty of Arts and Humanities)

More about the project

The research project explores cross-cultural encounters between Philippine Muslim, Spanish, and U.S. American actors at the turn of the twentieth century by using fashion as the entry point. Fashion is deeply entangled with social, political, and economic processes. The lens of fashion therefore is helpful to access questions concerning gendered and racial representations and taxonomies, labour, resource extraction, consumption, and production.

The main purpose of this thesis is to challenge the dichotomy between colonial and indigenous perspectives and to problematize normative ways of history writing by exploring new methodological approaches such as cross-analysis of textual, visual, and material culture, which are more integrative of the stories of local groups and communities. By looking at a diverse set of source types – such as reports, photographs, and textiles – in order to trace indigenous perspectives, the project also reflects on the question of where a Global archive can be found and what it constitutes of.

The project is part of the research in:
Linnaeus University Centre for Concurrences in Colonial and Postcolonial Studies