Food and Clothing

Clothing and food are two elements which are integral to our understanding of the role of identity in slum life. From objects of local economy to symbols of class and the brutal environment of the workhouse, food and clothing play a highly important role within the day to day life of slum dwellers.

Within this section we will analyse food and clothing in the context of English slums , from 1830 until 1939. To explore this concept we have chosen five areas of focus: philanthropy, economy, class, children and the workhouse. In addition to this, we will also show how food and clothing relate to the concepts of representation and identity, throughout our chosen forums of discussion.

The sources under analysis in this section have been selected due to the insight they provide in relation to the identities of the subjects involved. These sources highlight the variation of clothing available within the time period, and the food produce which was consumed.  The sources we have chosen, although different within their themes, hold various elements of similarity. Each source provides a visual representation of various elements of slum life, including portraits, photography, sketches and advertisements. The sources also present the concept of identity within the slum  through the way the slum dwellers have chosen to represent themselves, and how the artists have decided to depict the people in their work.

We hope you find the information provided to be informative and helpful in your understanding of the English ‘slum’.

Josh Daykin, Harriet Edwards, George Hills, Amelia Turner and Joe Woods