Olympics, Kellyanne Cassidy Zachary, Olympic discussed on Dressed: The History of Fashion


A podcast roby explored the who what when of why we wear. We are fascists. Orients and your host april kellyanne cassidy zachary so today dress listeners. We continue our exploration into the historical significance of drafts to the summer olympic athlete. Which if we were not clear in the first episode it is the summer not winter olympics. Which are the focus of this series and we are certainly fans of the winter olympics as well but that little dance around. The ice is gonna have to wait until february of next year when the twenty fourth winter olympics opened in beijing so stay tuned for an episode on the evolution of figure skating at tire. Which has a very intimate and surprising connection with fashion. We have been meaning to get to this episode for quite some time. Yes super excited so much. Look forward to including this episode as we will learn today. The fashion industry has played no small role in both the winter and summer olympics over the years while we might be familiar with the partnership between the world of fashion and the olympics. Today for instance ralph. Lauren has of course been the official outfitter of the us olympic and paralympic team since two thousand eight. This was not yet a relationship that had formed at the time of the nineteen twenty eight olympics. Which is where we left off an art last episode so today we pick up four years later at the nineteen thirty two olympics which we pinpoint as really laying the foundation for the symbiotic relationship between this international sporting event and the fashion industry that survives to this very day the games of the tenth summer olympia which were held in los angeles from july thirtieth to august fourteenth nineteen thirty two were notable for many reasons including the introduction of features that remain staples of the olympics. Today for instance the tenth olympiads length of sixteen days is particularly noteworthy here because prior to this the shortest summer games had been seventy nine days law. Which is i said. Last time i would totally watch days of the olympics and also The summer olympics in nineteen thirty two were also the first olympics to feature that tiered. Winner's podium that we all know and love and also the olympic village although the latter at this time was reserved for the male athletes and the women athletes stayed at a very luxurious hotel called chapman park in her oral interview with the la eighty. Four foundation american hurdler. Evelyn hall adams says quote. I was also really honored when i was selected as the friendliest girl in the village. I love this. I do too. I enjoyed changing costumes. Are changing our regular clothes. Sometimes we even changed uniforms back and forth. I changed with one of the german girls. Tilly fleischer. I wore her costume for pictures and she wore mine. I also changed with one of the japanese girls. This was only for pictures because we only had one uniform and couldn't trade them. But i did trade all my own clothes and all the jewelry i had. Which wasn't much and as exemplified by the trading of uniforms staying together. And these close quarters really fostered a sense of camaraderie between athletes were otherwise competitors. This success in the nineteen thirty two olympics was quite an impressive accomplishment considering took place during the great depression which is of course the huge economic downturn that wreaked havoc on the world beginning with the us stock market crash in nineteen twenty nine so despite the global reverberations of the depression thirty seven nations managed to send thirteen hundred plus athletes of which one hundred twenty six four women to compete in la with over one hundred events for comparison. This is just less than half of the athletes in amsterdam games which had preceded it and apparently getting these athletes to america. It was not easy. Some countries like brazil and cuba did not have the money to their athletes to la for their nineteen seventy two olympics so they sent them with goods like coffee beans and sugar hoping that they could trade their way in and apparently this worked for the brazilians but not for the cubans who sadly nine entry into the us because the value of sugar had gone down and not cover their expenses. Heartbreaking of just say heartbreaking so the depression definitely kept some athletes from the competition but the same cannot be apparently said of the spectators because some one hundred thousand people the most people in the audience in olympic history up until this point packed the stadium for the opening ceremony really eager to forget their woes in the midst of the depression and they really wanted to support the international spectacle of all prowess that was about to begin. Oh yeah and each country's athletes came to perform and perform they. Did the japanese swim team. For instance swept all of this swimming events but one there was a japanese swimmer by the name of casula kitamura who became the youngest male ever to win olympic gold. When it just fourteen he took first place in the fifteen hundred meter. Freestyle gold medal wins are also achieved by american swimmer. Helen madison who won gold in the one hundred meter and four hundred meter freestyle events and the four by one hundred freestyle relay and american track and field star. Mildred babe dietrichsen bay was her nickname. Took home the gold in both a javelin throw the high hurdles and then she took home silver in the high jump and it is said that babe dietrichsen would undoubtedly have security even more battles had women not thin limited to participating in only up to three events so mildred is really considered to be one of the greatest all around women athletes in his street. She excelled at not only track and field but also basketball baseball and golf and cass. As you know there. Is this very epic photo of her. At the tenth olympia snapped just a few moments before. She launches the javelin and she is wearing kind of the me to us now. White tank and shorts you know as her uniform and the red and blue. Us insignia on her chest as well as a stripe running across your chest and on the side of her shorts. Yeah so this is the uniform that we've seen many years prior worn by both men and women which honestly had not changed much since the debut of the modern olympics in eighteen ninety six but it is worth noting that at these first games and kind of after those first couple of games the uniform of t shirt and shorts would have been worn by male athletes. Only as women were not even allowed to participate in the eighteen ninety six games but even if they had there is no way in eight women would have been allowed to wear garments that revealed so much of their body. Yes but that would change. As more and more women came to participate in the olympics for women to become winning athletes for their nation they had to have clothing. That helped not hindered their performance. And we've talked about this on the show in the past. But i find it super interesting that it is actually women's stage performers and athletes who set the proverbial stage for all of these innovations in women's clothing that happened beyond the sporting arena. You know and they do this year sometimes. Even decades before clothing such as pants shorts tank tops etc became societally acceptable forms of dress for women and i mean even just one decade prior mildred bear arms and legs would have been downright shocking and perhaps in many ways it still was april because it was also at the nineteen thirty two olympics that this sixteen year old australian swimmer claire denis who actually won the gold medal and the two hundred meter breaststroke get this. She was almost disqualified for showing not quote.

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