ARTH 1204



20th Century Dress and Culture / Humanities Department*

Instructor: Katie Sabo

Meeting Time: Friday, 11:30am-2pm

Zoom Classroom link:

              Meeting ID: 924 1435 6732

               Passcode: fashion


Course/Section: ARTH 1204 OL34[54142], 3 Credits

Office Hours: Friday 2-3pm

*Class meets online on Zoom.

Catalog Course Description: A survey of fashion history, from the end of the 19th century to the present. It offers an overview of the many influences that have affected the development of clothing. Studies the effect of an historical period on the clothing of the time through analysis of its economics, politics, religion and culture. Issues affecting the industry are explored through readings, videos, discussions and links to local industry are made through field trips and guest speakers.

COURSE CO/PREREQUISITE (S): ENG 1101  Pathways Flexible Core: Creative Expression

Learning Outcomes:

     Identify and describe apparel of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries using appropriate terminology.Class discussion, quizzes, examination & term paper/presentation 
   Recognize and discuss key apparel fashion leaders and/or designers and their contributionsClass discussion, quizzes, examination & term paper/presentation
   Distinguish among the social, political, and economic cultural influences on fashion for each of the various periods Class discussion, research, development of timeline with term paper, & examinations
Identify and explain direct and indirect technological influences on dressClass discussion, term paper and presentation, and examinations
   Assess the multiple explanations for the impact of dress and body image on human behavior.Class discussion, research, term paper & presentation 
   Analyze concepts and theories of and research in human behavior to market place interaction related to textile and apparel products of everyday life.Class discussion & oral presentation 
   Recognize and describe the diversity of culture in space and time and how it effects and influences fashion style s and trends Class discussion, term paper & presentation 
Write a research paperCourse assignments/ homework that comprise the term paper

General Learning Outcomes:

Demonstrate expanded cultural global awareness and sensitivity  Class discussion, examinations & term paper 
Identify issues and problems, ask relevant questions, and link them with appropriate methods of inquiryResearch for term paper 
Discern multiple perspectives of how the process of change (including fashion change) affects and is affected by dress across time and cultures.Class discussions, research, term paper and presentation 

Recommended Textbook:

English, Bonnie, A Cultural History of Fashion in the 20th and 21st Centuries, 2013. Bloomsbury Academic, Second Edition NY, ISBN: 0857851357

Recommended Web Sites:

City Tech Library Database: Oxford Art Online
Brief articles by leading scholars in the field; use your LIB number on your City Tech ID to access

Fashion Institute of Technology: Fashion History Timeline
An open-access source featuring articles by FIT faculty and students on fashion history themes and objects from over 100 museums and libraries.

Google We Wear History: The Stories Behind What We Wear
Google partnered with several cultural institutions to create a thematic database for users.

Metropolitan Museum: Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History

Educational resource that contains essays about works in The Met’s collections, including works of art with chronologies and locations. You can search by subject, region, key word, material, author, or other means.

The Fashion and Race Database
An online platform filled with open-source tools that expand the narrative of fashion history and challenge mis-representation within the fashion system, centering BIPOC scholars and creatives.

The Fashion Studies Journal (FSJ)
An online journal for fashion scholarship and criticism, founded in 2012 by students in the MA Fashion Studies program at Parsons School of Design.


Unravel: a fashion podcast

Dressed: The History of Fashion


Fashion History YouTube Channel

I maintain a youtube channel of documentaries and other content relevant to fashion history. Please subscribe!

A list of Museums in New York City that have Dress and Textile Collections:

The Museum at FIT:
The Cooper Hewitt:
The Brooklyn Museum
The Metropolitan Museum of Art The Museum of the City of New York

NYCCT Academic Integrity Policy

Students and all others who work with information, ideas, texts, images, music, inventions, and other intellectual property owe their audience and sources accuracy and honesty in using, crediting, and citing sources. As a community of intellectual and professional workers, the College recognizes its responsibility for providing instruction in information literacy and academic integrity, offering models of good practice, and responding vigilantly and appropriately to infractions of academic integrity. Accordingly, academic dishonesty is prohibited in The City University of New York and at New York City College of Technology and is punishable by penalties, including failing grades, suspension, and expulsion.

Humanities Department Attendance Statement

It is the conviction of the Humanities department that a student who is not in a class for any reason is not receiving the benefit of the education being provided. Missed class time includes not just absences but also latenesses and early departures. Missed time impacts any portion of the final grade overtly allocated to participation. More than two unexcused absences will result in the loss of one letter grade, and for each subsequent absence. In case of an emergency please show me documentation on professional letterhead of the emergency. If you miss a class please watch the recording of that class, which you can download in Blackboard Collaborate. To get attendance credit, submit a paragraph summary of that class to me via email. You can do this up to one time.

Students who miss a scheduled presentation or exam due to illness or medically-related emergencies will be referred to the Center for Students Accessibility. The CSA will review any documentation requested and give the student a letter to share with the relevant instructor if accommodations need to be made.

Humanities Diversity Statement

The Humanities Department complies with the college wide nondiscrimination policy and seeks to foster a safe and inclusive learning environment that celebrates diversity in its many forms and enhances our students’ ability to be informed, global citizens. Through our example, we demonstrate an appreciation of the rich diversity of world cultures and the unique forms of expression that make us human.

Student Conduct Policy

Any conduct that interferes with the educational process is prohibited in classes at NYCCT. This includes any behaviors that are dangerous, disruptive, disrespectful or disorderly. Students must use commonly accepted standards of courtesy, cooperation, consideration and mutual respect at all times.

Disability/Medical Accommodations Statement

City Tech is committed to supporting the educational goals of enrolled students with disabilities in the areas of enrollment, academic advisement, tutoring, assistive technologies and testing accommodations. If you have or think you may have a disability, you may be eligible for reasonable accommodations or academic adjustments as provided under applicable federal, state and city laws. You may also request services for temporary conditions or medical issues under certain circumstances. If you have questions about your eligibility or would like to seek accommodation services or academic adjustments, please contact the Center for Student Accessibility at 300 Jay Street room L-237, (718) 260- 5143 or

Assessment and Grading:

Activity Explanation Percent of Overall Grade
Written ResponsesCompleted outside of class and submitted on Blackboard25%
Midterm ExamTake-home exam15%
Final ExamTake-home exam15%
Research Project PaperFinal Paper20%
ParticipationAttendance, participation in discussions and submission of Homework assignments25%

Grading System: All grades will be based in proportion to the following scale: A = 93 – 100 A- = 90 – 92 B+ = 87 – 89 B = 83 – 86 B- = 80 – 82 C+ = 77 – 79 C = 70 – 76 D = 60 – 69 F = 59 and below. If a final grade is not a whole number, any decimal greater than .5 will be rounded up (e.g. 82.51 becomes an 83).

Grading and add/drop policies are in accordance with University policies and are recorded as: WU-Unofficial Withdrawal (attended at least once)
WF-Withdrew Failing


Withdrawal (never attended)

Process for Evaluation:

Outstanding (A) Good (B)
Average (C)
Below Average (D)

work goes beyond the package and presentation requirements. work meets all grading criteria, performed to top standards. work meets all but one or two of the grading criteria.
work meets only one or two of the grading criteria.

Midterm Reports: All students will be notified through their CUNY- NYC College of Technology e-mail accounts and/or posted on Blackboard about their progress in this course by the mid- semester point. Mid-term grades are assessed as follows, per recommendation by the Office of the Provost: P-Passing, BL-Borderline, U-Unsatisfactory, SA-Stopped Attending.

Exams: The class follows the format of an art history class. Each class will include slide lecture with images demonstrating and summarizing the main points in the lecture. These images will be used in the Midterm and Final exams. All information students are expected to know for the exams will be provided in a detailed review sheet on Blackboard. Exams will be take-home, and must be submitted via Blackboard. They will be comprised of mainly short essay sections, which will require writing a paragraph or two and includes compare/contrast discussions of the aesthetics and subject matter of the works studied. Other additional sections may be included, as well as Extra credit questions based on class lectures, videos and readings.

Guidelines for Written Assignments:
All papers MUST be typed. A page is the equivalent of a 1.5 line-spaced 8.5 x 11-inch paper with one-inch margins using 12-point Times New Roman font. Follow the page length guidelines for each assignment. All work MUST contain the student name and email address.

Effective writing helps clarify ideas and communicate those ideas to others. Be organized, clear, and succinct. Grammar, punctuation, style, and spelling count. Write in college-level American English that is appropriate to the business community. You will not receive an A if your writing is awkward, contains grammatical or punctuation errors, or is disorganized.

Papers will be graded on the following criteria:
• Clear and thorough application of direct and database concepts and principles (including

material covered in the assigned reading, lectures, and discussions).
• Demonstration of original, logical, strategic thinking including a complete analysis of

facts, logical synthesis, and persuasive conclusion/recommendation. Specific examples

should support the analysis. Address the specific requirements of the assignment.
• Quality of research (depth, breadth, appropriateness) and proper acknowledgement of

references, including complete citations using APA style in-text notes, when appropriate.

Final Presentation: You will present a 5-minute PowerPoint presentation on a designer (I will provide a list for you to choose from). You should submit your notes on Blackboard, which can take the form of a detailed outline or a paragraph form essay, and should be about one page.

Please note: Detailed guidelines for these and other assignments will be posted to Blackboard. They should be submitted through Blackboard on or before the due date. For assignments due on Thursday, the end of our class week, I will accept them the following day (Friday). If an emergency prevents you from submitting your work on time get in touch with me.

Homework: You will have readings (and sometimes videos, and other HW) assigned for each session. Be prepared to discuss them in class. Set aside 2-3 hours/week for homework assignments, lecture review, and reading assignments.

Course Schedule

1August 28Fashion and Textiles to 1900. The development of the modern fashion system, clothing and consumerism.  
2September 4 Fashion and Textiles to 1900. The development of the fashion system: designers and the couture market.Session 2 reading packet  
3September 11Art and Fashion in early 20th century, Design and MarketsSession 3 reading packet Written response 1
4September 181910-1929: WWi, the little black dress, and flapper chic: The development of ‘modern’ fashion for women.Session 4 reading packet  
5September 25no classSession 5 reading packetWritten response 2
6October 2Haute Couture in the 1920sSession 6 reading packet  
7October 9Haute Couture in the 1930sSession 7 reading packet  
8October 161930-1947: Design for America: Hollywood, Sportswear, and the emergence of American FashionNone.Final paper proposal
9October 23MIDTERM EXAMSession 9 reading packet  
10October 301946-1957: The Post-war Fashion landscape.  Dior and Balenciaga, and  new consumer textiles for dress. Session 10 reading packet  
11November 6 Session 11 reading packet  
12November 131947-1963: NY Fashion and the Casualization of American dressSession 12 reading packet  
13November 201963-1977: Counterculture and YoutquakeSession 13 reading packet  
14November 25No Class meeting. Prof. Sabo will individually edit each final draft and return by 11/30/2020.  Please email me if you’d like a private session to discuss your paper. Full Draft of final paper Due
15December 41977-1999: Postmodern in FashionFINAL EXAM [exam will be distributed after class. You will have 48 hours to complete and return the exam].  Final paper Due December 11, 2020.

This is a zero textbook cost course. In lieu of a textbook, these readings are related to the lecture topics. Readings can be found in the “Readings” folder in Blackboard.


Phillip Shister Dress and Culture 10/12/20 Professor Katie Sabo


Fashion is Spinach –