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Anna Vaughan Kett

Ms, Dr

20142018
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Personal profile

Research interests

Anna Vaughan Kett is an academic working across a range of interests within material and visual culture studies. Her research interests centre on political expressions through dress, and primarily the work of Quaker women anti-slavery activists in Britain and America in the nineteenth century. She is currently researching further into Quaker women, textiles and dress, the Free Produce Movement, and British women’s activism against slave-grown cotton goods during the mid-nineteenth century. Current projects include further investigation into ‘free’ cotton cloth produced in Manchester and Carlisle, the packages of aid sent by Quakers to freed slaves in Kansas and the humanitarian work of the Quaker shoemaking Clark family of Street, and their extended kinship networks in Britain and America.

Her research areas include histories of craft, design, textiles and dress; Quaker and non-conformist histories, and their approaches to dress; abolitionism and women’s role; the material culture of abolitionism in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries; political and dissenting dress; the production of slave-grown and (non-slave) free-labour cotton and the production of hand-woven cotton. 

Anna teaches on the Academic Programme in History of Art and Design (BA Hons History of Art and Design; BA Hons Fashion and Dress History; BA Hons Visual Culture; BA Hons Philosophy, Politics, Art; MA History of Design and Material Culture). She also teaches Critical Studies on the BA Hons Fashion and Textiles and BA Hons 3-D Design and Craft. She is a member of the university's Centre for Design History and Objects Unwrapped Research Group; Museum Lab at University College London; the Quaker Studies Group at the Religious Society of Friends, London.

Supervisory Interests

Anna supervises MA students on textiles, dress and material culture.

Scholarly biography

Dr Anna Vaughan Kett is Senior Lecturer in the History of Art and Design in the School of Humanities and also Critical Studies in the School of Art. Her research interests and publications cluster into these areas: the histories of textiles and dress; nineteenth century visual and material culture; the visual and material cultures of abolition and slavery; Quaker history. Prior to teaching at the University of Brighton Anna was a Lecturer in Cultural and Supporting Studies at Northbrook College, Worthing, on the BA Hons Fashion and Textiles and BA Hons Media Studies programmes. Before that, Anna was Assistant Director of the International Summer School at the University of Sussex, and prior to that a Lecturer in Fashion Studies on the Summer School Programme. Anna has guest lectured at a number of other institutions.

Anna holds a PhD, an MA in Design History and Material Culture (Distinction) and a BA in Fine Art (Painting) (First Class), all from the University of Brighton where she has lectured since 2007. She also holds an MA in Fine Art (Painting) (Distinction) from Slade School of Art, University College, London.

Approach to teaching

At the University of Brighton I have taught extensively across years within the History of Art and Design programmes and also delivering the historical and theoretical elements of Critical Studies programmes to arts practice courses. These require differing teaching styles and modes of delivery, even as they share subject content. As such, they require flexible, adaptive and innovative teaching to maximise student engagement and to boost student confidence. I use objects and examples to bring the subject alive, and I see object-based research as the crux of historical enquiry.  As a first year tutor, and Personal Academic Tutor my roles are focussed on student wellbeing. In this capacity I have worked closely with the Student Support and Guidance Tutors and Student Services, and have instigated a wellbeing knitting group. I have written and updated modules across the programmes.  

Research interests

Publications

2018: ‘Escape and Evasion: Dresses Made From Maps in the Second World War’ Objects Unwrapped. https://blogs.brighton.ac.uk/objectsunwrapped/essays/formatted-final_avk_escape-and-evasion-dresses-made-from-maps-in-the-second-world-war-1xzjqtz/ ; Book review of Moral Commerce: Quakers and the Transatlantic Boycott of the Slave Labor Economy. Cornell University Press, in Winterthur Portfolio 51:4 (2018) 256-7. 2017:Bookreview of Moral Commerce: Quakers and the Transatlantic Boycott of the Slave Labor Economy. Cornell University Press. Quaker Studies 22:4 (2017) 265-7. 2014. ‘Quaker Women and Anti-Slavery Activism: Eleanor Clark and the Free Labour Cotton Depot in Street’, Quaker Studies.Volume 19, Issue 1, September 2014 pp.137-156. 2014: ‘”Without the Consumers of Slave Produce There Would be no Slaves”. Wearing Belief, Quaker Women, Dress and Anti-Slavery Activism 1853-1858’, in Brycchan Carey and Geoffrey Plank (eds) Quakers and Abolition 1657-1865, University of Illinois Press. Anna is currently working on a book proposal and articles for publication.

Conference Papers

2018:‘Cotton and Antislavery: The Strange Story of Slave-Labour and Free-Labour Gingham Cloth in the 1850s.’ Costume Colloquium VI: Textiles in Fashion, Creativity in Context (Florence, Italy 14-18 November); ‘A Case Study of a Module that Builds Confidence.’ Student Success, University of Brighton (Brighton, 14 September); ‘Escape and Evasion: Dresses Made From Maps in the Second World War,’ Objects Unwrapped, Worthing Museum, Worthing (30 June). 2016:Negotiating Simplicity and Extravagance in Nineteenth Century Quaker Dress: Restraint and Excess in the Clothing Worn by Eleanor Stephens Clark and Helen Bright Clark of Street’, Costume Colloquium: Restraint and Excess, Florence, Italy (16-19 November); ‘Free Labour Cotton and Radical Antislavery in the Domestic Lives of British Women Quakers in the Mid-Nineteenth Century’ Radical Histories/Histories of Radicalism, History Workshop Journal, QMUL, London (1-3 July); The Charitable Work of Mrs Eleanor Clark of Street: The Olive Leaf Society and ‘Grand Fancy Bazaars’ in the 1850s’ Quaker Historians and Archivists Annual Conference, Woodbrooke Centre for Quaker Studies, University of Birmingham (24-26 June). 2013:‘Cotton Anti-Slavery and Empire: Issues in the Atlantic Supply Chain for Free-Labour Cotton in the 1850s’, Pennsylvania Historical Society Annual Conference, Gettysburg, USA (16-19th October). 2012: ‘The PhD Journey’ History Lab Symposium, Institute of Historical Research, University of London 10th October); ‘Wearing Anti-Slavery Activism: British Quaker Women and Free-Labour Cotton Dress in the 1850s’, History Lab Annual Conference, Institute of Historical Research, University of London (13-14th June). 2011: ‘Wearing Belief: Quakers and Free-Cotton in the 1850s’, Developments in Dress History, University of Brighton (7-9th December). 2010: ‘Wearing Belief: Women Quakers and the Free Produce Movement in Britain 1853-1858’, Quakers and Slavery 1657-1865, Haverford and Swarthmore Colleges, Philadelphia, USA (4-6th November);‘”Buy For the Sake of the Slave”: The Street Free Labour Cotton Depot 1853-1858’, Quaker History Group, Friends House, London (23rd October). 2009: ‘The Clarks of Street, Transatlantic Co-operation and the Free Produce Movement in Britain’, Liberating Sojourn: Black Abolitionist Visitors to Britain, Faculty of History, University of Liverpool (23-25th April); ‘The Clarks of Street, Transatlantic Co-operation and the Free Produce Movement in Britain’, Student Research Day, Faculty of Arts, University of Brighton (10th October); ‘When Fashion Promoted Humanity: The Wedgwood Slave Medallion 1787-1807’, Brighton Postgraduate design History Society Annual Conference (6th June).

Research funding awards

2009-2011: PhD Research Award, Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK. 2008-9: PhD Studentship, University of Brighton; 2007: MA Research Bursary, the Pasold Fund, UK; The Boise Foundation Travel Scholarship, University College, London; The Maud Foster Memorial Travel Scholarship, University College, London; Italian Government Travel Abroad Study Scholarship for Cultural Exchange, UK.

Research interests

Research funding awards

2009-2011: PhD Research Award, Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK. 2008-9: PhD Studentship, University of Brighton; 2007: MA Research Bursary, the Pasold Fund, UK; The Boise Foundation Travel Scholarship, University College, London; The Maud Foster Memorial Travel Scholarship, University College, London; Italian Government Travel Abroad Study Scholarship for Cultural Exchange, UK.

Approach to teaching

I am an active researcher and much of my teaching is underpinned by my own first-hand experiences with primary, archive and collections-based observations.  I bring my own experiences and examples into the lecture and seminar rooms, and to show students how we use objects to make sense of the past. At final year and post-grad level, the discussions with students frequently inform my own thinking, as a more lively exchange of ideas takes place.

Scholarly biography

Bachelor, University of Brighton

Master, University of Brighton

Master, University College London

Master, University of Brighton

PhD, University of Brighton

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  • 2 Similar Profiles
Quaker Arts & Humanities
Cotton Arts & Humanities
Labor Arts & Humanities
Slaves Arts & Humanities
Anti-slavery Arts & Humanities
Activism Arts & Humanities
1850s Arts & Humanities
Excess Arts & Humanities

Research Output 2014 2018

Book review of Moral Commerce: Quakers and the Transatlantic Boycott of the Slave Labor Economy

Vaughan Kett, A., 2018, 51, 4, p. 256-257 2 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalBook ReviewResearchpeer-review

Moral Commerce: Quakers and the Transatlantic Boycott of the Slave Labor Economy.

Vaughan Kett, A., 2017, 22, 4, p. 265-7 2 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalBook ReviewResearchpeer-review

Extravagance
Restraint
Excess
Clothing
Simplicity

Quaker Women and Anti-Slavery Activism: Eleanor Clark and the Free Labour Cotton Depot in Street

Vaughan Kett, A., 1 Sep 2014, 19, 1, p. 137-156 20 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Open Access
File
Labor
Slaves
Anti-slavery
Cotton
Quaker