About this Episode

There have been so many, probably hundreds, different styles and types of hat in history that a question inevitably arises: why? Why did something that began as a simple protection against inclement weather take on such varied forms and social meanings? Bridget Kendall and guests explore not just how hats were made, and by whom, but also how their function has evolved over centuries and across cultures. By focusing on just five distinct hat types, they sketch out a brief social history of headwear. Bridget is joined by Dr. Drake Stutesman, an adjunct professor at New York University, and the author of the book Hat: Origins, Language, Style; Dr. Ulinka Rublack, professor of Early Modern European History at Cambridge University with a particular interest in Renaissance fashion; and Dr. Kirill Babaev, a cultural anthropologist and writer from the Russian Academy of Sciences and founder of the World of Hat museum in Riga, Latvia. [Image: Model Carre Otis wearing a wide-brimmed black straw hat with a print of lemons on the underside. Credit: Arthur Elgort/Conde Nast via Getty Images]

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