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UAL Research Online

The Art of Burkini: Design and Political Cartoons as Gestures that Matter

Almila, Anna-Mari (2017) The Art of Burkini: Design and Political Cartoons as Gestures that Matter. In: Gestures That Matter, the 12th international conference of The Arts in Society research network, American University of Paris.

Type of Research: Conference, Symposium or Workshop Item
Creators: Almila, Anna-Mari

The burkini has recently emerged as a political symbol around the world. But before that, burkini, or Burqini(TM), was a garment designed for enabling the entry in mixed-gender spaces of leisure and physical exercise of faithful Muslim women. In this paper, I discuss the design and religiously guided aesthetics of the Australian trademark Burqini, the materialities of the garment and the body it seeks to shelter and cover, and how the garment itself is a gesture of integration, if often read in a completely opposite manner. I further discuss the representation of the burkini in political cartoons, analysing the gestures of condemnation of various actors – both Muslim and non-Muslim – through the visual marker of the veil. The burkini, I argue, is a material gesture of fundamental semiotic multiplicity, and at the same time is an everyday commonplace garment that allows its wearer to engage in certain activities and penetrate (or not) specific spaces.

Keywords/subjects not otherwise listed: Islamic veiling, Muslim women, burqa, burkini
Your affiliations with UAL: Colleges > London College of Fashion
Date: 14 June 2017
Event Location: American University of Paris
Date Deposited: 17 May 2018 15:01
Last Modified: 17 May 2018 15:01
Item ID: 12537
URI: https://ualresearchonline.arts.ac.uk/id/eprint/12537

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