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Linda Mather Collection


This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

University of Pennsylvania: Penn Museum Archives
Mather, Linda
Linda Mather Collection
Date [bulk]:
Date [inclusive]:
Call Number:
0.4 linear foot (The collection consists of six folders housed in an archival box)
In 1979, during her sabbatical leave from Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey, Dr. Linda Mather took a trip to Pakistan to study the clothing of Pakistani women. Dr. Mather traveled through the city and rural areas of Pakistan taking photographs of the women and their clothing. The results of Dr. Mather’s study are compiled in a collection she gifted to the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Anthropology and Archaeology. The collection consists of correspondence, research activities, journals, exhibitions and photographs.
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Dr. Linda Mather the President at Beacon Consulting Associates was previously an Associate Professor of Communications at Glassboro State College (now Rowan University) in Glassboro, New Jersey. Having spent much of her professional career teaching about the connection between clothing and communication, during the year of 1979-1980, Dr. Mather, while on sabbatical leave, traveled to Pakistan to study the clothing of Pakistani women. While in Pakistan, Dr. Mather’s spent time with, not only the female students of Kinnaird College in Lahore, Pakistan, but with the women of Pakistan’s rural villages. The results of Dr. Mather’s study are expressed in the portrait photography of over 200 Pakistani women.

Scope and Contents

The textual components of Dr. Mather’s collection consists of correspondence in the form of letters sent and received before, during and after her time in Pakistan, two journals of Dr. Mather’s emotions and feelings regarding the dress of Pakistani women as well as her own experiences in Pakistan and a photo journal cataloguing the photographs that Dr. Mather took while in Pakistan. The collection also includes a compilation of the research activities that Dr. Mather performed while in Pakistan as well as evidence of the various exhibitions in which Dr. Mather participated. The news clippings that pertain to Dr. Mather and her research as well as the photography from her study are stored separately.

The first series consist of letters to and from Dr. Mather pertaining to her study in Pakistan. The letters are arranged chronologically. Invitations sent to Dr. Mather as well as business cards acquired by Dr. Mather during her trip are also included in this series. Much of the correspondence consist of inquires regarding Dr. Mather’s study and the results of the study (the photographs).

Two spiral notebooks comprise Dr. Mather’s journal during her trip to Pakistan. The journals consist mainly of commentary on Dr. Mather’s personal experiences in Pakistan as well as her interactions with the Pakistani people. These journals resemble a diary more so than a set of field notes, although they serve a purpose in articulating the emotions evoked by the dress of Pakistani women.

The photo journal maintains detailed information on the various photographs that Dr. Mather took during her time in Pakistan. The photos are catalogued by Dr. Mather in chronological order. Many of the photographs catalogued in Dr. Mather’s journals can be found in the image database; however some images mentioned in the journal appear to have been removed by Dr. Mather from the collection.

Dr. Mather’s research activities are complied in a chronological list. The list is a summary of all the activities Dr. Mather participated in during her time in Pakistan including interviews as well as letters that she sent and received while in Pakistan. The research activities also include Dr. Mather’s progress report on her study of the clothing of Pakistani women which includes a brief description of the study.

The exhibition records consist of a list of all the exhibitions in which Dr. Mather’s study was included. Pamphlets and brochures from the various exhibitions as well as letters pertaining to the exhibitions are included as well.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

University of Pennsylvania: Penn Museum Archives

Revision Description


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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)
  • Kinnaird College for Women.
Geographic Name(s)
  • Pakistan
Personal Name(s)
  • Mather, Linda
  • Decoration and ornament, Ainu
  • Ethnology
  • Material culture
  • Museum exhibits

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Collection Inventory

Correspondence 1978-1991.


Research Activites 1975-1985.


Journals 1979-1980.


Exhibitions 1981-1985.