The Romanian Blouse and the Many Forms of Cultural Diplomacy

Cultural diplomacy takes many shapes and forms. The forms and ornaments found on Romanian folk blouses, called “ia” (pronounced E – A), are just the latest and probably most unusual manifestation of what cultural diplomacy can be. Unbeknown to most, the Romanian blouse is truly an universal cultural icon. Worn by celebrities, part of cultural revolutions such as the hippie movement in the 60s, loved by famous fashion designers from around the world, and an inspiration for famous artists or movie characters, the Romanian Blouses trace their origins back to the ancient civilizations found along the Danube river thousands of years ago. They preserved a part of the language of...

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