Prown, Jules David. "Mind in Matter, An Introduction to Material Culture Theory and Method", Winterthur Portfolio, 17 (1982).
Prown classifies the realm of material culture according to function in six categories, and arranges these categories in sequence, from the more decorative (aesthetic) to the more functional. Within these categories, clothing belongs to the "adornment" class which falls in between decorative and functional. Dresses have certain functional requirements, e.g. they "envelop" the female human body, and these basic requirements have given them certain unity in their basic configuration. However, both chronically and diachronically, we can find a great variety of dresses. These differences show in dresses' style. Therefore, function is the constant and style is the variable. In purely functional objects, purpose almost completely determines the object's form, but, in objects like dresses, both considerations (decoration and function) are of equal importance.
Substantial analysis Material
Object's form or configuration
Visual character (lines/curves)
Rhythm (patterns of distribution)
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