Beautifying the Body: In Ancient Africa and Today
Beautifying the Body: In Ancient Africa and Today by Christelle Kedi
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Beautifying the Body in Ancient Africa and Today by Christelle Kedi: Body adornment has enormous significance in Africa. The quest for beautification is central to African cultures from the time of the ancient Egyptians up to the present. This book looks at the history of adornment and at its practical application today in Africa and among black people worldwide.
The topics are covered:
Afro hair: The nature of Afro hair. Hair care and its spiritual importance in ancient Nubian cultures. Modern hairstyling and hairdressing, including men’s beards. Hair braiding.
Skin care: What does black skin represent? Aesthetics and skin care in pre-colonial African society. The modern Western cosmetics industry and its relation to the needs of black people. Hygiene and safe ingredients.
Body adornment and modification: The cultural history of adornment and body modification including tattooing, scarification, painting. The revival of such practices today.
Textiles and colour: Significance of colour in different cultures, including Hindu and African tradition. Understanding the rainbow. The use of colour in textiles – clothing and head wrapping.
Jewellery. African examples of the significant wearing of jewellery. Christelle Kedi explains the links from the past to the present and how different traditions developed in different parts of Africa and in the Caribbean, the United States and Europe. The book is of interest both to the historian and to the personal needs of modern individuals. It is beautifully illustrated.
Christelle Kedi is an international make-up artist and fashion stylist. She is Director of the African fashion and Arts Centre in London and was recently awarded the title of “Make-up Artist of the Year 2012” in the Women 4 Africa awards. She has written articles in many journals and been commissioned for London Fashion Week, the Afro Hair Show and the Numbi Festival. She aims to help beauty and fashion professionals to understand African aesthetics and she strongly defends “Afro” solutions to beauty issues.
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