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Porter la culotte : enquête sur l’imaginaire du pantalon dans le monde grec

Abstract : As C. Bard recently showed, the history of the wearing of the trousers and of its «conquest» by women through the contemporary era involves matters such as gender, authority and power. But what about Ancient Greece, where the clothing norm relies mainly on the resort to pieces of draped fabric? What kinds of individuals are associated to this «bifid closed garment»? Is it used, in some specific contexts, to mark a border between sexes and their assigned activities and spaces? In order to shed light on the value system associated to trousers in the Greek mind, the inquiry starts from an analysis of the lexicon. The use of the word «anaxyrides» in literary texts shows that it is a characteristic element of the military uniform of the Medes, the Scythians and the Persians, but more generally a functional outfit for foreign horseme or bowmen. The wearing of these « bags for legs » (thulakoi) that cover the lower part of the body, that conceal it, concerns rather men and may tend to feminize them. The iconographic data bring a different and complementary light: the pants function as an iconic sign that draw opposition between the Greek hoplite and the «other warrior», bowman or horseman — that’s why Amazons often wear such kind of costume. We may conclude therefore that, in the Greek mind, trousers are related to a military ethic and a socio-political model perceived as foreign to those of the city.
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Submitted on : Monday, April 15, 2019 - 12:37:09 PM
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Adeline Grand-Clément. Porter la culotte : enquête sur l’imaginaire du pantalon dans le monde grec. Mètis - Anthropologie des mondes grecs anciens, Daedalus/EHESS, 2013, Des femmes en action. L'individu et la fonction en Grèce antique, Hors Série, pp.199-216. ⟨10.4000/books.editionsehess.2953⟩. ⟨halshs-02099852⟩



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