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Manly Proportions


 802177. New York Public Library 802172. New York Public Library I want to offer one last example of the state of men’s tailoring in the 1830s. We can see in these two illustrations the effects of military tailoring on civilian jackets and trousers. In both cases, a nipped-in waist is regarded as necessary. The models are quite robust in proportions, excepting this convention—something we’d more readily expect in feminine dress. Clearly, well-fashioned men from this time were expected to display the kind of body type utilized in these illustrations. The reaction I feel is one of tyranny. How many longed to emulate this look but failed to do so, unless forced into male corsetry or similar bindings? Asking men to achieve a particular look through artificial means was one more reason to finally rebel. These pictures show the seeds of that rebellion.


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