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    Development of modernised wedding costumes capturing Palestinian heritage

    Arafat, Beissan Tawfiq (2023) Development of modernised wedding costumes capturing Palestinian heritage. Doctoral thesis (PhD), Manchester Metropolitan University.

    File will be available on: 22 June 2024.
    Available under License Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial No Derivatives.

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    After the founding of the state of Israel in 1948, Palestine faced a significant social, economic, and political shift. Until then, traditional Palestinian costumes were noteworthy in that they showed a woman's financial and marital status; this was identifiable by the fabric, cut, and embroidered motifs. The persistent social, political, and cultural threats inflicted on Palestinian inhabitants have raised their understanding of the relevance and sensitivity of cultural identity. Currently, there is a knowledge gap related to focus research on Palestinian traditional wedding costumes and their evolvement through the years. Moreover, in the absence of an available framework, current attempts to design modernised Palestinian costumes fall short of preserving original features and sustained construction methods. This research is currently the only in-depth study dedicated to establishing a framework that captures and preserves Palestinian heritage in developing modernised wedding costumes through sustained processes. The research is qualitative in nature and based on grounded theory methods. Interviews and observations were the dominant means of primary data collection, supplemented with secondary sources of archival records, website content, and any existing research and articles available, leading to a broad diversity of data for analysis. Through oral history, this research seeks to examine and document the variations of Palestinian wedding costumes dating from 1940 to the present day; it also evaluates the cultural and social significance of Palestinian artisanal crafts and the sustainable processes in creating traditional wedding costumes. By doing this, it will compile a library of work on embroidery designs, motifs, traditional textiles, garment shapes, and construction methods from the main regions of Palestine. Furthermore, an analysis of contemporary fashion designers’/artisans’' interpretations of traditional wedding costumes representing Palestinian heritage is covered thoroughly to help enable the establishment of contemporary fashion designers’/artisans' interpretations of traditional wedding costumes representing Palestinian heritage covered thoroughly to help establish the framework of concepts and design principle. While developing the study's framework, the researcher finds a balance between preserving the past and traditions while modernising them—yet keeping the main regional key elements of traditional wedding costumes of Palestine, this enabled the creation of a theoretical approach called Conservative Modernism", which is a fusion of modernism and conservatism theories. Finally, a design range and a prototype were developed after establishing the conceptual framework to validate the study's framework for modernised Palestinian wedding costumes. The findings of this research can be used as a future reference for academics, anthropologists, historians, and designers interested in intangible and tangible cultural heritage revitalisation and modernisation (more specifically traditional costumes) through sustainable processes, mainly in areas of conflict where cultural heritage suffered drastic changes.

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