Wearing Your Politics On Your Sleeve: Anarchism and Apparel

This presentation examines the role of clothing in a contemporary radical political milieu: anarchism. Using both survey and interview techniques I am investigating the relationship between anarchists and their clothing; how what one wears can reinforce, spread, and/or complicate one's political identity. I currently have 40 'informants' for the study. I am deploying the work of Daniel Miller, Susanne Küchler, Amy De la Haye, and Elizabeth Wilson in this study. The interviews are still being conducted so I have not committed to any 'conclusions' just yet. James Birmingham is an ex-PhD student turned independent scholar whose current research focuses on how archaeology and material culture studies can benefit the anarchist milieu. He is a boardmember of the Institute for Anarchist Studies, a co-founder of the conference All Power to the Imagination!, and aspiring bookstore worker-owner. He lives in Sarasota, Florida with his partner Tiffany and pays the rent by crafting cocktails.
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James Birmingham