Her research interests include African dress and fashion, Islamic fashion, the politics of dress, the embodiment of religion, working-class histories of dress, narratives surrounding dress and the body, and how non-Western and minority dress is represented in museum collections. Her teaching has included textile labs, cultural aspects of dress, autobiographies of dress and the body, fashion history, fashion theory, and aesthetics.
Interests: Histories of fashion, dress, and the body; laws and politics; museum collections
Heather Akou is a historian of fashion, dress, and the body.
Research + Teaching Interests: textile analysis, design, and product development; Africa and African Diaspora; socio-cultural textiles and apparel; non-western histories of dress; migration and globalization; fashion theory and symbolic interaction
Regional Expertise: Mali
Areas: Socio-cultural history of dress and textile in African and Islamic cultures; fashion theory; aesthetics; the formation of ethnic and religious identities; and textile design.