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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Show and Tell: A Tang Jacket

David modelling his Tang jacket
This month my students are doing show and tell presentations. A show and tell presentation is a kind of informal talk in which a student stands up in front of the class and talks about an object he or she has brought to class.

That's why we call it show and tell. First, you show the object to the class . Then, you talk about what it is, where you got it, why it is important to you, or to your culture, whether it has a historical or an emotional story behind it

A few days ago,my student David brought in a beautiful tang jacket, which he modeled. He gave a short, but very interesting talk about the jacket and how it has come back into fashion - especially during the Spring Festival.  The non Asian students in class were very interested and had many questions. 

 More about  the Tang jacket

A tangzhuang (Chinese:  literally "Chinese suit" is a Chinese jacket that originated at the end of the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911). 

Tangzhuang evolved from Magua ( a Manchu clothing, which was in turn adopted by the Han Chinese during Qing Dynasty. At that time, only noblemen, aristocracy and government officials were wearing it, however, in modern times it was eventually adopted by common people.  

Tangzhuang has become one of the 3 main formal men's dress wear in China behind Zhongshan suit and western suit. Tangzhuang is usually made in different colors, most commonly red, dark blue and gold etc for creating a harmonious, joy and festive atmosphere. 

One common design is the usage of Chinese characters (Hanzi, 汉字) as monogram such as Fu (福,'happiness' in Chinese), Shou (寿, 'longevity' in Chinese) to spread good luck and wishes.
 Now wearing Tangzhuang at important occasions such as formal partyiesm festivals and celebrations has become a trend for Chinese men while women will usually wear Qipao to match them.

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