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Living Machines in the Nineteenth Century
The nineteenth century was the golden age of the horse. In urban America, the indispensable horse provided the power for not only vehicles that moved freight, transported passengers, and fought fires but also equipment in breweries, mills, foundries, and machine shops. Clay McShane and Joel A. Tarr, prominent scholars of American urban life, here explore the critical role that the horse played in the growing nineteenth-century metropolis. Using such diverse sources as veterinary manuals, stable periodicals, teamster magazines, city newspapers, and agricultural yearbooks, they examine how the horses were housed and fed and how workers bred, trained, marketed, and employed their four-legged assets. Not omitting the problems of waste removal and corpse disposal, they touch on the municipal challenges of maintaining a safe and productive living environment for both horses and people and the rise of organizations like the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. In addition to providing an insightful account of life and work in nineteenth-century urban America, The Horse in the City brings us to a richer understanding of how the animal fared in this unnatural and presumably uncomfortable setting.
Thoroughbred Culture in Lexington and Newmarket
The world of Thoroughbred racing is glamorous, secretive, dangerous, and seductive—the sport of kings and the poor man's obsession. While the spectacle of racing stirs the imagination, it belies the ruthless business that lies beneath. This engaging original study demystifies this complex world by comparing centers of excellence in Britain and North America. Drawing from intensive field work in Suffolk's Newmarket and Kentucky's Lexington, Rebecca Cassidy gives us the inside track on all players in the industry—from the elite breeders and owners to the stable boys, racetrack workers, and veterinarians. She leads us through horse farms, breeding barns, and yearling sales; explains rigorous training regimens; and brings us trackside on race day. But the history of Thoroughbred racing culture is more than a collection of fascinating characters and exciting events. Cassidy's investigation reveals the factors—ethical, cultural, political, and economic—that have shaped the racing tradition.
Luxury, Technology, and Urban Ambition in America, 1829–1929
From the time they emerged in American cities in the 1820s, commercial luxury hotels were far more than places where a traveler could eat and sleep—they were icons of style, opulence, and technological sophistication. Molly W. Berger offers a compelling history of the American hotel and how it captured the public’s imagination as it came to represent the complex—and often contentious—relationship among luxury, economic development, and the ideals of a democratic society. From New York to San Francisco and points in between, Berger profiles the country’s most prestigious hotels, including Boston’s 1829 Tremont, which served as a model for luxury hotel design; San Francisco's world famous Palace, completed in 1875; and Chicago's enormous Stevens, built two years before the great crash of 1929. The fascinating stories behind their design, construction, and marketing reveal in rich detail how these buildings became cultural symbols that shaped the urban landscape. Though America’s large, luxury hotels were impressive architectural and corporate accomplishments, they were lightning rods for public debate about urban development and economic power. Inside the buildings unfolded human dramas that shaped ideas about race, gender, and class. Berger deftly explores the tension between both elite and egalitarian values that surrounded America’s luxury hotels. The American hotel evolved into a “machine for living,” soaring to skyscraper heights, defining ideas about technological innovation, and creating a unified system of production and consumption unique to the modern world. Hotel Dreams is a deeply researched and entertaining account of how the hotel’s material world of machines and marble integrated into and shaped the society it served.
William Marling's provocative work analyzes—in specific terms—the impacts of American technology and culture on foreign societies. Marling answers his own question—how "American" is globalization?—with two seemingly contradictory answers: "less than you think" and "more than you know." Deconstructing the myth of global Americanization, he argues that despite the typically American belief that the United States dominates foreign countries, the practical effects of "Americanization" amount to less than one might suppose. Critics point to the uneven popularity of McDonalds as a prime example of globalization and supposed American hegemony in the world. But Marling shows, in a series of case studies, that local cultures are intrinsically resilient and that local languages, eating habits, land use, education systems, and other social patterns determine the extent to which American culture is imported and adapted to native needs. He argues that globalization can actually accentuate local cultures, which often put their own imprint on what they import—from translating films and television into hundreds of languages to changing the menu at a McDonalds to include the Japanese favorite Chicken Tastuta. Marling also examines the unexpected ways in which American technology travels abroad: the technological transferability of the ATM, the practice of franchising, and "shop-floor" American innovations like shipping containers, bar codes, and computers. These technologies convey American attitudes about work, leisure, convenience, credit, and travel, but as Marling shows, they take root overseas in ways that are anything but "American."
Vol. 30 (2008) through current issue
From the analytical engine to the supercomputer, from Pascal to von Neumann, from punched cards to CD-ROMs--the IEEE Annals of the History of Computing covers the breadth of computer history. Featuring scholarly articles by leading computer scientists and historians, as well as firsthand accounts by computer pioneers, the Annals is the primary publication for recording, analyzing, and debating the history of computing. The Annals also serves as a focal point for people interested in uncovering and preserving the records of this exciting field. The quarterly publication is an active center for the collection and dissemination of information on historical projects and organizations, oral history activities, and international conferences.
Environment and Technology in History
This book challenges the notion that a definitive boundary exists between nature and technology, and questions conventional thinking about humankind's relationship with both. It is a foundational text in the subfield of Envirotech, and is designed for upper-level undergraduate use.
The Development of Obstetric Ultrasound
To its proponents, the ultrasound scanner is a safe, reliable, and indispensable aid to diagnosis. Its detractors, on the other hand, argue that its development and use are driven by the technological enthusiasms of doctors and engineers (and the commercial interests of manufacturers) and not by concern to improve the clinical care of women. In some U.S. states, an ultrasound scan is now required by legislation before a woman can obtain an abortion, adding a new dimension to an already controversial practice. Imaging and Imagining the Fetus engages both the development of a modern medical technology and the concerted critique of that technology. Malcolm Nicolson and John Fleming relate the technical and social history of ultrasound imaging—from early experiments in Glasgow in 1956 through wide deployment in the British hospital system by 1975 to its ubiquitous use in maternity clinics throughout the developed world by the end of the twentieth century. Obstetrician Ian Donald and engineer Tom Brown created ultrasound technology in Glasgow, where their prototypes were based on the industrial flaw detector, an instrument readily available to them in the shipbuilding city. As a physician, Donald supported the use of ultrasound for clinical purposes, and as a devout High Anglican he imbued the images with moral significance. He opposed abortion—decisions about which were increasingly guided by the ultrasound technology he pioneered—and he occasionally used ultrasound images to convince pregnant women not to abort the fetuses they could now see. Imaging and Imagining the Fetus explores why earlier innovators failed where Donald and Brown succeeded. It also shows how ultrasound developed into a "black box" technology whose users can fully appreciate the images they produce but do not, and have no need to, understand the technology, any more than do users of computers. These "images of the fetus may be produced by machines," the authors write, "but they live vividly in the human imagination."
Serology in Interwar and National Socialist Germany
Explores the course of development of German seroanthropology from its origins in World War I until the end of the Third Reich. Gives an all encompassing interpretation of how the discovery of blood groups in around 1900 galvanised not only old mythologies of blood and origin but also new developments in anthropology and eugenics in the 1920s and 1930s. Boaz portrays how the personal motivations of blood scientists influenced their professional research, ultimately demonstrating how conceptually indeterminate and politically volatile the science of race was under the Nazi regime.
The President's Science Advisory Committee and Cold War America
In Sputnik's Shadow traces the rise and fall of the President's Science Advisory Committee from its ascendance under Eisenhower to its demise during the Nixon years. Zuoyue Wang examines key turning points during the twentieth century, including the beginning of the Cold War, the debates over nuclear weapons, the Sputnik crisis in 1957, the struggle over the Vietnam War, and the eventual end of the Cold War, showing how the involvement of scientists in executive policymaking evolved over time and brings new insights to the intellectual, social, and cultural histories of the era.
A History of Caring for Dying Patients in America
At the turn of the twentieth century, medicine’s imperative to cure disease increasingly took priority over the demand to relieve pain and suffering at the end of life. Filled with heartbreaking stories, The Inevitable Hour demonstrates that professional attention and resources gradually were diverted from dying patients. Emily K. Abel challenges three myths about health care and dying in America. First, that medicine has always sought authority over death and dying; second, that medicine superseded the role of families and spirituality at the end of life; and finally, that only with the advent of the high-tech hospital did an institutional death become dehumanized. Abel shows that hospitals resisted accepting dying patients and often worked hard to move them elsewhere. Poor, terminally ill patients, for example, were shipped from Bellevue Hospital in open boats across the East River to Blackwell’s Island, where they died in hovels, mostly without medical care. Some terminal patients were not forced to leave, yet long before the advent of feeding tubes and respirators, dying in a hospital was a profoundly dehumanizing experience. With technological advances, passage of the Social Security Act, and enactment of Medicare and Medicaid, almshouses slowly disappeared and conditions for dying patients improved—though, as Abel argues, the prejudices and approaches of the past are still with us. The problems that plagued nineteenth-century almshouses can be found in many nursing homes today, where residents often receive substandard treatment. A frank portrayal of the medical care of dying people past and present, The Inevitable Hour helps to explain why a movement to restore dignity to the dying arose in the early 1970s and why its goals have been so difficult to achieve.