The Johns Hopkins University Press

Studies in Industry and Society

Philip B. Scranton, Series Editor, Published with the assistance of the Hagley Museum and Library

Published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press

Go

Browse Books in Series:

Studies in Industry and Society

1 2 NEXT next

Results 1-10 of 11

:
:
restricted access This search result is for a Book

Auto Mechanics

Technology and Expertise in Twentieth-Century America

Kevin L. Borg

The history of automobiles is not just the story of invention, manufacturing, and marketing; it is also a story of repair. Auto Mechanics opens the repair shop to historical study—for the first time—by tracing the emergence of a dirty, difficult, and important profession. Kevin L. Borg's study spans a century of automotive technology—from the horseless carriage of the late nineteenth century to the "check engine" light of the late twentieth. Drawing from a diverse body of source material, Borg explores how the mechanic’s occupation formed and evolved within the context of broad American fault lines of class, race, and gender and how vocational education entwined these tensions around the mechanic’s unique expertise. He further shows how aspects of the consumer rights and environmental movements, as well as the design of automotive electronics, reflected and challenged the social identity and expertise of the mechanic. In the history of the American auto mechanic, Borg finds the origins of a persistent anxiety that even today accompanies the prospect of taking one's car in for repair.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

Chasing Sound

Technology, Culture, and the Art of Studio Recording from Edison to the LP

Susan Schmidt Horning

In Chasing Sound, Susan Schmidt Horning traces the cultural and technological evolution of recording studios in the United States from the first practical devices to the modern multi-track studios of the analog era. Charting the technical development of studio equipment, the professionalization of recording engineers, and the growing collaboration between artists and technicians, she shows how the earliest efforts to capture the sound of live performances eventually resulted in a trend toward studio creations that extended beyond live shows, ultimately reversing the historic relationship between live and recorded sound. A former performer herself, Schmidt Horning draws from a wealth of original oral interviews with major labels and independent recording engineers, producers, arrangers, and musicians, as well as memoirs, technical journals, popular accounts, and sound recordings. Recording engineers and producers, she finds, influenced technological and musical change as they sought to improve the sound of records. By investigating the complex relationship between sound engineering and popular music, she reveals the increasing reliance on technological intervention in the creation as well as in the reception of music. The recording studio, she argues, is at the center of musical culture in the twentieth century.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

For Business and Pleasure

Red-Light Districts and the Regulation of Vice in the United States, 1890–1933

Mara L. Keire

Mara L. Keire’s history of red-light districts in the United States offers readers a fascinating survey of the business of pleasure from the 1890s through the repeal of Prohibition in 1933. Anti-vice reformers in the late nineteenth century accepted that complete eradication of disreputable pleasure was impossible. Seeking a way to regulate rather than eliminate prostitution, alcohol, drugs, and gambling, urban reformers confined sites of disreputable pleasure to red-light districts in cities throughout the United States. They dismissed the extremes of prohibitory law and instead sought to limit the impact of vice on city life through realistic restrictive measures. Keire’s thoughtful work examines the popular culture that developed within red-light districts, as well as efforts to contain vice in such cities as New Orleans; Hartford, Connecticut; New York City; Macon, Georgia; San Francisco; and El Paso, Texas. Keire describes the people and practices in red-light districts, reformers' efforts to limit their impact on city life, and the successful closure of the districts during World War I. Her study extends into Prohibition and discusses the various effects that scattering vice and banning alcohol had on commercial nightlife.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

From Little London to Little Bengal

Religion, Print, and Modernity in Early British India, 1793-1835

Daniel E. White

From Little London to Little Bengal traces the cultural exchange between Britain and India during the Romantic period. To some, Calcutta appeared to be a “Little London,” while in London itself an Indianized community of returned expatriates was emerging as “Little Bengal.” Circling between the two, this study reads British and Indian literary, religious, and historical sources alongside newspapers, panoramas, religious festivals, idols, and museum exhibitions. Together and apart, Britons and Bengalis waged a transcultural agon under the dynamic conditions of early nineteenth-century imperialism, struggling to claim cosmopolitan perspectives and, in the process, to define modernity. Daniel E. White shows how an ambivalent Protestant contact with Hindu devotion shaped understandings of the imperial mission for Britons and Indians during the period. Investigating global metaphors of circulation and mobility, communication and exchange, commerce and conquest, he follows the movements of people, ideas, books, art, and artifacts initiated by writers, publishers, educators, missionaries, travelers, and reformers. Along the way, he places luminaries like Romantic poet Robert Southey and Hindu reformer Rammohun Roy in dialogue with a fascinating array of lesser-known figures, from the Baptist missionaries of Serampore and the radical English journalist James Silk Buckingham to the mixed-race prodigy Henry Louis Vivian Derozio. In concert and in conflict, these cultural emissaries and activists articulated national and cosmopolitan perspectives that were more than reactions on the part of marginal groups to the metropolitan center of power and culture. The British Empire in India involved recursive transactions between the global East and West, channeling cultural, political, and religious formations that were simultaneously distinct and shared, local, national, and transnational.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

Hotel Dreams

Luxury, Technology, and Urban Ambition in America, 1829–1929

Molly W. Berger

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.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

A Nation of Small Shareholders

Marketing Wall Street after World War II

Janice M. Traflet

Immediately after the frightening Great Crash of 1929, many Americans swore they would “never” or “never again” become involved in the stock market. Yet hordes of Americans eventually did come to embrace equity investing, to an extent actually far greater than the level of popular involvement in the market during the Roaring 1920s. A Nation of Small Shareholders explores how marketers at the New York Stock Exchange during the mid twentieth century deliberately cultivated new individual shareholders. Janice M. Traflet examines the energy with which NYSE leaders tried to expand the country’s retail investor base, particularly as the Cold War emerged and then intensified. From the early 1950s until the 1970s, Exchange executives engaged in an ambitious and sometimes controversial marketing program known as “Own Your Share of America,” which aimed to broaden the country’s shareholder base. The architects of the marketing program ardently believed that widespread shareownership would strengthen “democratic capitalism” which, in turn, would serve as an effective barrier to the potential allure of communism here in the United States. Based on extensive primary source research, A Nation of Small Shareholders illustrates the missionary zeal with which Big Board leaders during the Cold War endeavored to convince factions within the Exchange as well as the outside public of the practical and ideological importance of building a true shareholder nation. In these troubled economic times, every citizen should welcome studies that shed light on U.S. financial markets. A Nation of Small Shareholders puts the role of individual investors in broader, long-term perspective.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

Nylon and Bombs

DuPont and the March of Modern America

Pap A. Ndiaye translated by Elborg Forster

What do nylon stockings and atomic bombs have in common? DuPont. The chemical firm of DuPont de Nemours pioneered the development of both nylon and plutonium, playing an important role in the rise of mass consumption and the emergence of the notorious “military-industrial complex.” In this fascinating account of the lives and careers of Du Pont’s chemical engineers, Pap A. Ndiaye deftly illustrates the contribution of industry to the genesis of a dominant post–World War II “American model” connecting prosperity with security. The consumer and military dimensions of twentieth-century American history are often studied separately. Ndiaye reunites them by examining Du Pont's development of nylon, which symbolized a new way of life, and plutonium, which was synonymous with annihilation. Reflecting on the experiences and contributions of the company's engineers and physicists, Ndiaye traces Du Pont's transformation into one of the corporate models of American success.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

Punched-Card Systems and the Early Information Explosion, 1880–1945

Lars Heide

At a time when Internet use is closely tracked and social networking sites supply data for targeted advertising, Lars Heide presents the first academic study of the invention that fueled today’s information revolution: the punched card. Early punched cards helped to process the United States census in 1890. They soon proved useful in calculating invoices and issuing pay slips. As demand for more sophisticated systems and reading machines increased in both the United States and Europe, punched cards served ever-larger data-processing purposes. Insurance companies, public utilities, businesses, and governments all used them to keep detailed records of their customers, competitors, employees, citizens, and enemies. The United States used punched-card registers in the late 1930s to pay roughly 21 million Americans their Social Security pensions, Vichy France used similar technologies in an attempt to mobilize an army against the occupying German forces, and the Germans in 1941 developed several punched-card registers to make the war effort—and surveillance of minorities—more effective. Heide’s analysis of these three major punched-card systems, as well as the impact of the invention on Great Britain, illustrates how different cultures collected personal and financial data and how they adapted to new technologies. This comparative study will interest students and scholars from a wide range of disciplines, including the history of technology, computer science, business history, and management and organizational studies.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

Refrigeration Nation

A History of Ice, Appliances, and Enterprise in America

Jonathan Rees

Only when the power goes off and food spoils do we truly appreciate how much we rely on refrigerators and freezers. In Refrigeration Nation, Jonathan Rees explores the innovative methods and gadgets that Americans have invented to keep perishable food cold—from cutting river and lake ice and shipping it to consumers for use in their iceboxes to the development of electrically powered equipment that ushered in a new age of convenience and health. As much a history of successful business practices as a history of technology, this book illustrates how refrigeration has changed the everyday lives of Americans and why it remains so important today. Beginning with the natural ice industry in 1806, Rees considers a variety of factors that drove the industry, including the point and product of consumption, issues of transportation, and technological advances. Rees also shows that how we obtain and preserve perishable food is related to our changing relationship with the natural world. He compares how people have used the "cold chain" in America to other countries, offering insight into more than just what we eat. Refrigeration Nation helps explain one small part of who we are as a people.

restricted access This search result is for a Book

Vegas at Odds

Labor Conflict in a Leisure Economy, 1960–1985

James P. Kraft

The stories of the shadowy networks and wealthy people who bankrolled and sustained Las Vegas's continuous reinvention are well documented in works of scholarship, journalism, and popular culture. Yet no one has studied closely and over a long period of time the dynamics of the workforce—the casino and hotel workers and their relations with the companies they work for and occasionally strike against. James P. Kraft here explores the rise and changing fortunes of organized and unorganized labor as Las Vegas evolved from a small, somewhat seedy desert oasis into the glitzy tourist destination that it is today. Drawing on scores of interviews, personal and published accounts, and public records, Kraft brings to life the largely behind-the-scenes battles over control of Sin City workplaces between 1960 and 1985. He examines successful and failed organizing drives, struggles over pay and equal rights, and worker grievances and arbitration to show how the resort industry’s evolution affected hotel and casino workers. From changes in the political and economic climate to large-scale strikes, backroom negotiations, and individual worker-supervisor confrontations, Kraft explains how Vegas's overwhelmingly service-oriented economy works—and doesn't work—for the people and companies who cater to the city's pleasure-seeking visitors. American historians and anyone interested in the history of labor or Las Vegas will find this account highly original, insightful, and even-handed.

1 2 NEXT next

Results 1-10 of 11

:
:

Return to Browse All Series on Project MUSE

Series

Studies in Industry and Society

Content Type

  • (11)

Access

  • You have access to this content
  • Free sample
  • Open Access
  • Restricted Access