Personal profile

Research interests

Interdisciplinary Research, centred primarily in Dress History, Theatre History and Material Culture. Specialist in historic Theatre Costume, particularly from the nineteenth and early twentieth century.

Research interests

Dr Veronica Isaac is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Humanities. She has a background in the museum sector and worked for the Department of Theatre and Performance at the Victoria and Albert Museum for over ten years. She has also carried out freelance projects with museums and private collections around Britain and lectures widely.

Alongside her teaching for the University of Brighton she  leads the MA in Fashion Curation and Cultural Programming at London College of Fashion. She also works as a curatorial consultant and freelance writer.

An interdisciplinary dress historian, her BA was in English Literature and History whilst her MA focused on Museum and Gallery Studies with a specialist pathway in Historic Textiles and Dress. In September 2016 she completed a PhD thesis investigating the personal and theatrical dress of the actress Ellen Terry (1847-1928).

Her particular specialism is the history of dress and theatre costume from the late 18th century to the mid-20th century and she is committed to promoting further academic research into the History of Costume for Performance.

Her work focuses on the role of costumes as carriers of meaning and memories and is founded on direct engagement with surviving garments and related material culture. Her on-going research showcases the important insights stage costumes can offer into the social, cultural and artistic values of the audiences for which they were originally created.

She is currently writing a new sartorial biography of nineteenth century actress Dame Ellen Terry (1847-1928), which highlights the central role her personal and theatrical wardrobe played in a wider process of 'self-fashioning'.

Supervisory Interests

Veronica welcomes enquiries for doctoral research relating to dress, costume and textile history. She is particularly interested in supervising projects connected with: costume for performance; the history of collecting; the relationship between clothing and the body; the material culture of dress, textiles and costume and interrogating the role dress can play as an expression of individual or shared identity. 

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, ‘Dressing the Part: Ellen Terry (1847-1928) – Towards a Methodology for Analysing Historic Theatrical Costume’, University of Brighton


Award Date: 1 Sept 2016

MA in Museum and Gallery Studies, specialising in the history of textiles and dress, University of Southampton


Award Date: 23 Jul 2009

BA joint honours in English Literature and History, University of York


Award Date: 1 Jul 2007

External positions

Course Leader MA Fashion Curation

15 Dec 2021 → …

Lecturer, New York University, London

1 Jan 201831 May 2022


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