Architectures of Seduction: Intimate Apparel Trade Shows and Retail Department Design, 1920–1940



In September 1921, Corsets & Lingerie, one of the nation’s leading trade journals, reported to its wholesale and retail industry readers— manufacturers, store owners, buyers, and saleswomen— on the new interior design of “Molly Mayer’s Beautiful Shop” in New York City.


Female Body Department Store Interwar Period Window Display Trade Journal 
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  1. 2.
    A foundational theoretical text on the dual position of the female spectator is Laura Mulvey, “Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema,” Screen 16:3 (Autumn 1975), 6–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 4.
    Susan Porter Benson, Counter Cultures: Saleswomen, Managers, and Customers in American Department Stores, 1890–1940 (Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1986)Google Scholar
  3. Elaine Abelson, When Ladies Go A-Thieving: Middle-Clas Shoplifters in the Victorian Department Store (New York: Oxford, 1989)Google Scholar
  4. William Leach, Land of Desire: Merchants, Power and the Rise of a New American Culture (New York: Vintage, 1993).Google Scholar
  5. 29.
    Lady Duff Gordon, Discretions & Indiscretions (London: Jarrolds, 1932), pp. 56\Google Scholar
  6. 30.
    Ibid., pp. 214–216. See also Linda Mizejewski, Ziegfeld Girl: Image and Icon in Culture and Cinema (Durham: Duke University Press, 1999), pp. 21Google Scholar

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© Elspeth H. Brown, Catherine Gudis, and Marina Moskowitz 2006

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