Denise N. Green


Denise N. Green

Assistant Professor
Phone: 607-255-3199 Fax: 607-255-1093
View Cornell University Contact Info
Curriculum Vitae
Biographical Statement:

Denise Nicole Green is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Fiber Science and Apparel Design and the Director of the Cornell Costume and Textile Collection.  Professor Green's research uses ethnography, video production, archival methods and curatorial practice to explore production of fashion, textiles, and visual design.  She is also a faculty member in American Indian and Indigenous Studies and Cornell Institute of Archaeology and Material Studies as well as a graduate field member in the Department of Anthropology at Cornell.

Professor Green received a PhD in Socio-Cultural Anthropology from the University of British Columbia. With the Ethnographic Film Unit at UBC and Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations communities, she directed a series of documentary films exploring textiles, identity and Aboriginal title.  Prior to this, she earned a Master of Science in Textiles from the University of California--Davis and a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Apparel Design from Cornell University.


Teaching and Advising Statement:

In the fields of textiles, clothing, design and fashion studies, we prepare our students to evaluate and anticipate human needs and desires. Fashioned bodies are an important part of cultural and economic worlds, which means students must consider ethics, social psychology, human behavior and cultural studies alongside design, textile science, anthropometry, fit, and technical design. Our field is interdisciplinary and multi-faceted; therefore, I strive to create a learning environment that challenges students to engage multiple perspectives and think both critically and creatively about textiles and fashion.

Current Professional Activities:

Director, Cornell Costume and Textile Collection

Faculty Member, American Indian and Indigenous Studies Program, Cornell University

Faculty Member, Cornell Institute of Archaeology and Material Studies, Cornell University 

Graduate Field Member, Department of Anthropology, Cornell University 

Faculty Advisory Committee Member, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art 

Consulting Scholar, Center for Native American and Indigenous Research, American Philosophical Society 

Faculty Fellow, Cornell Institute of Fashion and Fiber Innovation

Faculty Fellow, Risley Residential College for the Creative and Performing Arts

Faculty Fellow, Akwe:kon (American Indian Program)

Committee Member, Philosophical Missions Committee, International Textile & Apparel Association

Member, Costume Society of America

Member, Society for Visual Anthropology

Member, American Anthropological Association

Member, USA Yoga Federation 

Reviewer, Native American and Indigenous Studies Journal 

Reviewer, Clothing and Textiles Research Journal

Reviewer, Dress: Journal of the Costume Society of America

Reviewer, Journal of Contemporary Ethnography

Current Research Activities:

Research areas: cultural studies of style and fashion; ethnographic practice; documentary film production; Native American textiles and regalia; history of anthropology; textile printing and dyeing; space and place studies; museum studies and curatorial practice

I have been formally trained in textile and apparel design, anthropology, museum studies and video production.  I use ethnography in combination with archival and museum-based research methods to explore socio-cultural aspects of style, fashion, and dress.  I am working on a number of projects at the intersection of anthropology and fashion studies, including research on Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations' ceremonial textiles and fashion design, phenomenology and hot yoga practice, and historical research about modern dancer, silent film star, and fashion icon, Irene Castle  


Since 2009, I have investigated ceremonial textiles and regalia produced by the Hupacasath First Nation, an Indigenous group from the Alberni Valley on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. My research examines how textiles and dress produce declarations of territorial rights and ceremonial privileges, records of kinship, inter-tribal and colonial histories, and relationships between families, communities, and place. I am currently a consulting scholar for the Center for Native American and Indigenous Research at the American Philosophical Society (APS) library, and am working to reconnect Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations families more broadly with archival records at the APS.


In the past, I have examined subcultural style and identity negotiation through fashion at the Burning Man Project and in 4-H sewing clubs, Northern California roller derby leagues, and small-town communities.  I am currently working in on an ethnographic project about regular hatha yoga practitioners and how/why yoga practice may transform bodily perceptions and impact clothing choices in everyday life. I am also interested in histories of fiber, textile and apparel manufacturing in the United States, particularly sericulture and silk production in places like the Auburn Prison and in Northampton, MA. I am working on a project about Corticelli silks and their design collaboration with Irene Castle (1917 - 1927), which is the earliest evidence of a film star developing a self-named fashion brand. In much of my research, I use exhibition design, documentary film production, or other forums to make scholarship public and accessible. I am director of the Cornell Costume and Textile Collection (CCTC) and work with faculty, students, and visiting scholars to use our collection for exhibitions, research, and classroom teaching.  I am currently researching the International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union (ILGWU) labeling efforts for an upcoming costume exhibition in collaboration with the Kheel Center   

Current Public Engagement Activities:

As Director of the Cornell Costume & Textile Collection I curate, advise, and oversee the production of public exhibitions in the Human Ecology Building Terrace Level Display Cases, which are free and open to the public.  I also coordinate loans of CCTC artifacts to other museum instutitions for public display.  In 2016 we loaned items to the Mark Twain House & Museum, Lyndhurst, and Mann Library.  

In 2016 & 2017 I have organized art exhibitions of naturally dyed fiber art, clothing and textiles, which include both student and local artists.  These exhibitions are also free and open to the public. 



PhD, Anthropology, University of British Columbia  

MS, Textiles, University of California--Davis

BS, (honors), Fiber Science and Apparel Design, Cornell University

Courses Taught:

FSAD 1250: Art, Design, and Visual Thinking (every fall)

Introduction to visual arts and design that explores aesthetic and cross-cultural dimensions of visual experience. Augmented by slide presentations, artifacts, video, and an Internet-based textbook, lectures emphasize the varieties of visual expression seen in works of art and design. Discusses social, cultural, and historic interpretations of visual expression. 


FSAD 3250: Color and Surface Design of Textiles (every spring)

Studio experience in textile dyeing and surface design combined with exercises in color theory. Natural and synthetic dyeing techniques are taught. Students will produce a portfolio of textile surface designs using block printing, shibori, batik, silk painting, silk screen, and stitchery methods. Studio work is augmented by lectures on pattern and color theory illustrated by slides and textile examples.

FSAD 4021/6021: Textiles and Apparel in Developing Nations (Fall 2015 & Spring 2016)

Introduction to the history of textile and apparel production and global trade in the Indian subcontinent and the contemporary situation of fiber/textile/apparel manufacture in India.  The course explores ethical issues (labor, human health and environmental), economics, technological advances and politics, all which affect textile and apparel industries in India.  The course culminates in a two-week study tour of the apparel industry in India, focusing on the following cities and apparel parks in surrounding village areas: Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Coimbatore, Tirrupur, and Ooty.  

FSAD 3000/6000: Natural Dye Studio (Special Studies course for fall 2015 and fall 2016)

Studio experience and research experiments with locally sourced natural dyes, culminating in an exhibition of original design work colored entirely by natural dyes.  Final project exhibit on display in the Jill Stuart Gallery, Jan. 26 - Feb. 20, 2017.

FSAD 6415: Anthropology of the Fashioned Body (Fall 2016)

Graduate course where anthropology and cultural studies concepts and methods are used to study the fashioned body as it is represented in popular media and produced in everyday life.  Anthropologists have long been concerned with diverse cultural approaches to modifying the body and producing textiles, dress and other forms of material culture.  The course begins by studying early theoretical interventions and attempts to define the field of fashion, followed by the material culture turn and lastly analyzes contemporary research about the production, consumption and representation of globalized fashion. In this course students examine fashion as a site of cultural production and the multiple, overlapping influences of age/generation, class, ethnicity, gender, nationality, ability, race, religion, and sexuality on visual and material production of identity.    

FSAD 4010/6000: 150 Years of Cornell Student Fashion (Empirical Research, special topic course for 2014-2015)

Introduction to research methods appropriate to the field of fashion studies, with particular emphasis on oral history, archival- and materials-based methods. Students will develop a practical and theoretical understanding of curatorial practice.  The course outcome will be a collaboratively curated costume exhibition about changing fashions on the Cornell campus since 1865, primarily using garments and accessories from the Cornell Costume and Textile Collection. 

Related Websites:

I maintain the Facebook page and Blog for the Cornell Costume and Textile Collection:

Administrative Responsibilities:

Professor Green directs the Cornell Costume and Textile Collection (CCTC), which houses more than 10,000 items of apparel, accessories and flat textiles dating from the eighteenth century to present, including substantial collections of functional clothing, Western fashion and ethnographic costume. The CCTC advances knowledge of the social, cultural, historical, economic, scientific, technological and aesthetic aspects of fashion, textiles and apparel design through exhibition, research, teaching and preservation. A gallery displaying selections from the CCTC is located on the first floor of the Human Ecology Building, and is free and open to the public during normal weekday business hours when Cornell University is in session. 

Selected Publications:


Green, Denise N. 
(forthcoming 2017)
The Best Known and Best Dressed Woman in America: Irene Castle and Silent Film Style. Dress: Journal of the Costume Society of America (4)2. 
Green, Denise N. and Susan B. Kaiser (eds.)
(forthcoming 2017)
Fashion and Appropriation. Special issue of Fashion, Style, and Popular Culture.  London: Intellect. 
Green, Denise N.
Producing Place and Declaring Rights Through Thliitsapilthim (Nuu-chah-nulth Ceremonial Curtains). Textile. London: Taylor and Francis. 
Green, Denise N.
Genealogies of Knowledge in the Alberni Valley: Reflecting on Ethnographic Practice in the Archive of Dr. Susan Golla. Histories of Anthropology Annual, Vol. X. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 273 - 301.
Green, Denise N.
Cornell's Sesquicentennial: An Exhibition of Campus Style. Catwalk: The Journal of Fashion, Beauty and Style 5(1): Inter-Disciplinary Press, 43 - 62.  
Green, Denise N. 
Fashion(s) from the Northwest Coast: Nuu-chah-nulth Design Iterations.  In Miguel Angel Gardetti and Subramanian Senthikannan (eds.) Ethnic (Aboriginal) Fashion. New York: Springer Publishing, 19 - 46.
Green, Denise N. and Susan B. Kaiser
Men, Masculinity, and Style in 2008: A Study of Men's Clothing Considerations in the Latter Aughts. Critical Studies in Men's Fashion (3)2: 125 - 140 
Satinsky, Emily and Denise N. Green
Negotiating Identities in the Furry Fandom Through Costuming. Critical Studies in Men's Fashion (3)2: 107 - 124. 
Kaiser, Susan B. and Denise N. Green
Mixing Qualitative and Quantitative Methods in Fashion Studies: Philosophical Underpinnings and Multiple Masculinities. In Heike Jenss (Ed.) Fashion Studies: Research Methods, Sites and Practices. London: Bloomsbury. 
Green, Denise N. 
Hinkiits'am (Paired Serpent Headdresses). Otsego Institute 2010 Alumni Review. Online Publication.  
Green, Denise N. 
Nuu-chah-nulth First Nations’ Huulthin (Shawls): Historical and Contemporary Practices / Stella Blum Grant Report. Dress: Journal of the Costume Society of America 39(2): 153 - 201.
Green, Denise N., Lewis, Van Dyk and Charlotte Jirousek
Fashion Cultures in a Small Town: An Analysis of Fashion- and Place-Making. Critical Studies in Fashion and Beauty (4)1: 71 - 106.  
Green, Denise N.
Mamuu—La Pratique du Tissage / Mamuu—The Practice of Weaving.  Cahiers métiers d'art / Craft Journal 5(1): 37 - 59.
Green, Denise N. and Susan B. Kaiser
From Ephemeral to Everyday Costuming: Negotiations in Masculine Identities at the Burning Man Project. Dress: Journal of the Costume Society of America 37(1): 1-22.

Selected Keywords:
fashion, textiles, natural dye, fashion history, First Nations, Native American, American Indian studies, space and place, yoga, Bikram yoga, design, Nuu-chah-nulth, ethnography, visual anthropology, anthropology, ethnographic film, documentary film, hatha yoga, Burning Man, costume exhibition, curator, Cornell Costume and Textile Collection

The information on this bio page is taken from the CHE Annual Report.