The Politics of Dress in Somali Culture (African Expressive Cultures) (Paperback)

By Heather M. Akou

Indiana University Press, 9780253223135, 177pp.

Publication Date: June 23, 2011

Other Editions of This Title:
Hardcover (1/1/0001)

List Price: 24.95*
* Individual store prices may vary.


The universal act of dressing--shared by both men and women, young and old, rich and poor, minority and majority--has shaped human interactions, communicated hopes and fears about the future, and embodied what it means to be Somali. Heather Marie Akou mines politics and history in this rich and compelling study of Somali material culture. Akou explores the evolution of Somali folk dress, the role of the Somali government in imposing styles of dress, competing forms of Islamic dress, and changes in Somali fashion in the U.S. With the collapse of the Somali state, Somalis continue a connection with their homeland and community through what they wear every day.

About the Author

Heather Marie Akou is Assistant Professor in the Department of Apparel Merchandising and Interior Design, Indiana University Bloomington. Her work appears in Contemporary African Fashion (IUP, 2010) and Fashioning Africa (IUP, 2004).