Title

The "Tapado" as a Symbol of Progress and Panic

Subject Area

Spanish Peninsular Studies

Abstract

Early sixteenth century Spain reached an unprecedented level of wealth and growth due to the “discovery” of the New World and the territories added as part of the Holy Roman Empire. Naturally, cities and industry grew as capitalism came to replace feudalism as the primary mode of production, and international commerce brought foreign goods and fashions to Spain. Of particular interest to this investigation is the "tapado" fashion seen most prominently in Sevilla, the cosmopolitan center of the time. Symbolizing one’s belonging to such an internationally ostentatious center, the veiled fashion also came to be associated with infidelity and questionable morals. The "tapado" was a physical manifestation of the anonymity afforded by the booming new cities, a condition which allowed the individual to hide her actions and movements behind the veil. In this paper, we will examine how the tapado fashion represented the rapid economic progress and development of the time. We will then explore the negative connotations of it, which is to say, the alienation and isolation that accompanied the urban demographic shift. Ultimately, we will show how such a seemingly innocuous piece of material came to epitomize the social crisis in which Spain found itself by the seventeenth century.

Brief Bio Note

Adrianne Woods holds a BA in Spanish from Charleston Southern University and an MA in Spanish from the University of South Carolina. She is finishing her PhD from USC, writing on the dramatic conditions of Renaissance and Baroque Spain.

Location

Room 210

Presentation Year

2018

Start Date

4-5-2018 5:15 PM

Embargo

11-2-2017

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Apr 5th, 5:15 PM

The "Tapado" as a Symbol of Progress and Panic

Room 210

Early sixteenth century Spain reached an unprecedented level of wealth and growth due to the “discovery” of the New World and the territories added as part of the Holy Roman Empire. Naturally, cities and industry grew as capitalism came to replace feudalism as the primary mode of production, and international commerce brought foreign goods and fashions to Spain. Of particular interest to this investigation is the "tapado" fashion seen most prominently in Sevilla, the cosmopolitan center of the time. Symbolizing one’s belonging to such an internationally ostentatious center, the veiled fashion also came to be associated with infidelity and questionable morals. The "tapado" was a physical manifestation of the anonymity afforded by the booming new cities, a condition which allowed the individual to hide her actions and movements behind the veil. In this paper, we will examine how the tapado fashion represented the rapid economic progress and development of the time. We will then explore the negative connotations of it, which is to say, the alienation and isolation that accompanied the urban demographic shift. Ultimately, we will show how such a seemingly innocuous piece of material came to epitomize the social crisis in which Spain found itself by the seventeenth century.