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Tricolor Flag image This is Jacket 14 - July 2001   |   # 14  Contents   |   Homepage   |

This issue of JACKET is a co-production with SALT magazine

Harry Mathews

Rue de Rochechouart

In celebration of the centenary of the brassiere, invented by M. Hardt in Dresden in 1889.

Among my early memories of women taking their clothes off before making love, one stands out: that of certain modest Parisian prostitutes who, wishing to maintain their bosoms’ firmness and elevation, kept on their brassieres while shedding (with the occasional exception of their stockings) everything else. The time was the late 1940s. I bow to the memory of Fräulein Hardt in acknowledgment of this partial nakedness, which inverts the hierarchy of bodily parts normally hidden. The vision excited my curiosity not by its eroticism but as a first glimpse of the ways women themselves perceive their bodies.

Harry Mathews

Harry Mathews
Photographs copyright © Arthur Gerbault, Paris, 1991, 1999, from the book Immeasurable Distances by Harry Mathews, The Lapis Press, Venice, CA,1991, ISBN 0 932499 43 0

You can read other work by Harry Mathews in Issue # 3 of Jacket.

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This issue of Jacket is a co-production with SALT magazine, an international journal of poetry and poetics, edited by John Kinsella : PO Box 937, Great Wilbraham, Cambridge PDO, CB1 5JX United Kingdom ISSN 1324-7131

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