Minoan Snake Goddess

The History Of Corsets Is Probably More Complicated Than You Think
By Michelle Honig

The corset is one of the most misunderstood garments in fashion history. It's an easy target for fashion revisionists: removed from the body it once adorned, the corset's stiff structure, and it's unforgiving gridiron bone frame, looks suspiciously like a medieval torture device: crude but effective.

“It would be a terrible thing to have to wear that every day, all day. It would be like living in a cage,” says Zoe Helene, MFA, cultural activist and founder of Cosmic Sister, a women's collective promoting gender equality. “[Corsets are] absolutely about holding women back. There’s no doubt in my mind about that, and if you have a doubt, you haven’t worn one long enough,” says Helene.

Zoe Helene is an award-winning creative professional with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting & Design from the University of North Carolina and a Master of Fine Arts in Professional Theatre and Costume Design from Brandeis University where she was mentored by legendary costume designer Patricia Zipprodt.

November 2017