November
9th 2010
Futoriann presents fashions and news headlines of futures past

Posted under: American history, art, the body, weirdness, women's history

This Pathetone Weekly newsreel is a late 1930s look at what “Eve, 2000 A.D.” will be wearing:

I’m really struck by how accurate the predictions are–not the actual look of the clothing, but the general outlines of the fashion priorities of early 21st century people:  in a world in which denim is worn for evening wear and velvet and satin are worn in the daytime, women’s wear does in fact move seamlessly from day to night (with a little accessorizing, always).  The dress of transparent net highlighting trim that looks like the foundation garments is very Madonna-esque, ca. 1987, and the “cantilevered” heels are nearly identical to shoe styles I’ve seen all over the place in the past decade.  The menswear look is of course spot on with the phone, the “radio” (a.k.a. i-Pod), and the slouchy leisure wear pioneered in the late 1980s by M.C. Hammer.

Speaking of uncanny futorian (the opposite of historian) skillz:  I was reading the first chapter of Moby Dick last night, and came across this series of imagined headlines from the newspapers of 1851:

Grand Contested Election for the Presidency of the United States.

Whaling Voyage By One Ishmael.

BLOODY BATTLE IN AFGHANISTAN.

Of course, neither Herman Melville nor Ishmael were predicting a specific future with these headlines.  Ishmael is here musing as to “why it was exactly that those stage managers, the Fates, put me down for this shabby part of a whaling voyage, when otherswere set down for magnificent parts in high tragedies, and short and easy parts in genteel comedies.”  Still–it’s passing strange, ain’t it?  Here’s something else that’s more than a bit strange:  after publishing Moby Dick, Melville didn’t publish much of anything although he lived for forty more years!  Yikes.  All of you “stalled Associate Professors” should take comfort in that. 

10 Comments »

10 Responses to “Futoriann presents fashions and news headlines of futures past”

  1. Indyanna on 09 Nov 2010 at 9:52 am #

    If you want to read, or rather SEE, an account of bloody battles in Afghanistan, check out John Lennon, starring in I think about 1967, in a little number called _How I Won the War_. At least I think it was about Afghanistan.

  2. Futoriann presents fashions and news headlines of futures past … » Best Forex Techniques on 09 Nov 2010 at 4:56 pm #

    [...] more: Futoriann presents fashions and news headlines of futures past … Related Posts:Ohio State Buckeyes 2010 Football Preview, Futures Odds as well as … Ohio State [...]

  3. Matt L on 09 Nov 2010 at 5:23 pm #

    The menz-ware did sort of line up with MC Hammer! Astounding!

    I think the past would be moderately disappointed in the real existing 2000 AD (CE). Where is my rocket pack or flying car?

    Thanks for sharing the headlines from Melvile. I will take solace from hisexample… but only if I can actually hammer out that one great book.

  4. Matt L on 09 Nov 2010 at 5:24 pm #

    Thats supposed to be “his example” sorry… with proof reading like that, the one great book might be further off than I think…

  5. quixote on 09 Nov 2010 at 8:29 pm #

    I know it’s been said before, but, sigh!, the future ain’t what it used to be.

  6. Liz2 on 09 Nov 2010 at 9:51 pm #

    “never get in a land war in Asia”. As for the clip, I especially liked the ending “candy for cuties” – wtf?

  7. Comrade PhysioProf on 10 Nov 2010 at 1:31 pm #

    White Jacket is my favorite Melville booke.

  8. Future Fashion Past » A Usable Past on 11 Nov 2010 at 8:59 am #

    [...] Historiann.   « Vintage Library Posters | [...]

  9. Link Love « Grumpy rumblings of the untenured on 13 Nov 2010 at 2:28 am #

    [...] Historiann, this look back at what the past thought future fashions would be was cool.  They really hit the 1980s pretty darn well, IMO.  A second Historiann link, [...]

  10. Z on 17 Nov 2010 at 9:51 pm #

    This is fantastic — the film and the Melville quotation, both.