The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Pocketing the difference: pockets and gender in nineteenth-century Britain

Burman, Barbara (2002) Pocketing the difference: pockets and gender in nineteenth-century Britain Gender and History, 14, (3), pp. 447-469. (doi:10.1111/1468-0424.00277).

Record type: Article


This study situates pockets as significant gendered objects in the dress and lives of men and women in the period from the 1790s to 1914. Using surviving examples and a diverse range of visual and documentary sources, it examines the role of pockets in the consumption of personal possessions and money, and explores how pockets occupied a special place in relation to the body and its gestures. By revealing differences in the way men and women used their pockets, the study concludes that pockets embodied change and complexity within the consumption of fashion and the construction of gender.

Full text not available from this repository.

More information

Published date: November 2002
Additional Information: This special issue was published as a book of the same title by Blackwell, Oxford in 2003, ISBN 1-4051-0906-8. This essay is the first sustained exploration of the way pockets in male and female clothing have been used. It raises new questions about how they have shaped and encoded a gendered experience of the world. Working out from the established concerns of dress history with form and materials, the essay links these with everyday practices of gendered roles, including the possession of a repertoire of small personal items and the control and use of money. The essay combines a diverse range of types of primary sources with an examination of museum examples to make a multi-layered reading of its subject, including unexpected areas of female resistance to fashion.
Keywords: pocket, dress history, gender
Organisations: Winchester School of Art


Local EPrints ID: 48180
ISSN: 0953-5233
PURE UUID: 9d2c53b3-5dba-4684-a644-1b04d403305d

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 31 Aug 2007
Last modified: 17 Jul 2017 15:00

Export record



Author: Barbara Burman

University divisions

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton:

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.