Hinterland Warriors and Military Dress : European Empires and Exotic Uniforms / Edition 1

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Overview

Much of the exotic dress of the armies of Europe and elsewhere has its origins in the conditions of frontier wars fought by imperial armies. As states have expanded to control hinterlands occupied by culturally diverse peoples, the ensuing conflicts have had an impact on imperial armies and the way they have dressed. 'Hinterland warriors' have been employed by imperial governments for a multitude of reasons: they understand the tactics of enemies at the border and are skilled tacticians themselves; they possess local knowledge; they do not disrupt the labor supply; politicians do not have to answer for high casualty rates if these are suffered by hinterland rather than metropolitan troops; finally, they are often classed as 'martial races' and therefore do not require the training needed by fresh recruits.

Throughout time, imperial officers and auxiliaries adopted the dress of these hinterland troops under their command, and even metropolitan units in the imperial armies appropriated items of local dress while engaged in wars on the borders of the empire. These innovations frequently became institutionalized, and in many cases were distorted and stylized, resulting in a caricature of the dress of the hinterland troops that originally provided the model. This engrossing book charts how the perceptions of these marginalized peoples influenced and ultimately transformed the history of military dress.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A work long overdue" —Jourbanal for The Society for Army Historical Research

"Anyone with more than a passing interest in dress history should read [this book]." —Costume Society

Booknews
Much of the exotic dress of the armies of Europe has its origins in the conditions of frontier wars fought by imperial armies and in the employment of "Hinterland warriors" by imperial governments. This study charts how perceptions of these marginalized peoples influenced and ultimately transformed the history of military dress. Discussion encompasses Hussars of the eastern frontier, North African Mameluks and Zouaves, and the North American frontier experience. Includes b&w historical illustrations and a few photos. Abler is affiliated with the University of Waterloo, Canada. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781859732014
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
  • Publication date: 9/1/1999
  • Series: Dress, Body, Culture Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Lexile: 1430L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.62 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
1 Introduction: Empires and Hinterland Warriors 1
2 The Military Uniform: General Principles of Its Evolution 11
3 Hussars: Horsemen of the Eastern Frontier 23
4 Other Horsemen from the East: Uhlans and Cossacks 47
5 'Ladies from Hell' 67
6 North African Mameluks and Zouaves 99
7 Khaki - 'Not a Bad Colour for Work' 111
8 North America: Feathers and Leather 131
9 The Frontier Experience and the Military Uniform 149
Glossary 159
Notes 165
Bibliography 173
Index 189
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