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Electrifying America: Social Meanings of a New Technology, 1880-1940

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Electrifying America: Social Meanings of a New Technology, 1880-1940 Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

How did electricity enter everyday life in America? Using Muncie, Indiana - the Lynds' now iconic Middletown - as a touchstone, David Nye explores how electricity seeped into and redefined American culture. With an eye for telling details from archival sources and a broad understanding of cultural and social history, he creates a thought-provoking panorama of a technology fundamental to modern life.Emphasizing the experiences of ordinary men and women rather than the lives of inventors and entrepreneurs, Nye treats electrification as a set of technical possibilities that were selectively adopted to create the streetcar suburb, the amusement park, the "Great White Way," the assembly line, the electrified home, and the industrialized farm. He shows how electricity touched every part of American life, how it became an extension of political ideologies, how it virtually created the image of the modern city, and how it even pervaded colloquial speech, confirming the values of high energy and speed that have become hallmarks of the twentieth century. He also pursues the social meaning of electrification as expressed in utopian ideas and exhibits at world's fairs, and explores the evocation of electrical landscapes in painting, literature, and photography.Electrifying America combines chronology and topicality to examine the major forms of light and power as they came into general use. It shows that in the city electrification promoted a more varied landscape and made possible new art forms and new consumption environments. In the factory, electricity permitted a complete redesign of the size and scale of operations, shifting power away from the shop floor to managers. Electrical appliances redefined domestic work and transformed the landscape of the home, while on the farm electricity laid the foundation for today's agribusiness.David E. Nye teaches American history at the University of Copenhagen. He has published books on Henry Ford and Thomas Edison, as well as Image Worlds, a study of photography and corporate identities at General Electric.

Review:

"David Nye casts his bright light on everything from assembly lines to washing machines....[He] has the breadth of knowledge and the good sense to see the significance in paintings like Edward Hopper's 'Nighthawks.'" New York Times Book Review

Synopsis:

Using Muncie, Indiana, as a touchstone, David Nye explores how electricity seeped into and redefined American culture.

Synopsis:

How did electricity enter everyday life in America? Using Muncie, Indiana, as a touchstone, David Nye explores how electricity seeped into and redefined American culture. With an eye for telling details and a broad understanding of cultural and social history, he creates a thought-provoking panorama of a technology fundamental to modern life.

David E. Nye teaches American history at the University of Copenhagen. He has published books on Henry Ford and Thomas Edison, as well as Image Worlds, a study of photography and corporate identities at General Electric.

About the Author

David E. Nye teaches American history at the University of Copenhagen. He has published books on Henry Ford and Thomas Edison, as well as Image Worlds, a study of photography and corporate identities at General Electric.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780262640305
Subtitle:
Social Meanings of a New Technology, 1880-1940
Author:
Nye, David E.
Publisher:
The MIT Press
Location:
Cambridge
Subject:
General
Subject:
Energy
Subject:
Social aspects
Subject:
Technology
Subject:
Philosophy & Social Aspects
Subject:
Philosophy & Aspects
Subject:
Aspects
Subject:
Energy-General
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Electrifying America
Publication Date:
19920708
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
from 17
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
495
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

Engineering » Engineering » General Engineering
History and Social Science » US History » General
Reference » Science Reference » General
Reference » Science Reference » Philosophy of Science
Reference » Science Reference » Technology
Science and Mathematics » Energy » General
Science and Mathematics » Engineering » Featured Titles
Science and Mathematics » History of Science » Technology

Electrifying America: Social Meanings of a New Technology, 1880-1940 New Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$47.75 In Stock
Product details 495 pages MIT Press - English 9780262640305 Reviews:
"Review" by , "David Nye casts his bright light on everything from assembly lines to washing machines....[He] has the breadth of knowledge and the good sense to see the significance in paintings like Edward Hopper's 'Nighthawks.'"
"Synopsis" by , Using Muncie, Indiana, as a touchstone, David Nye explores how electricity seeped into and redefined American culture.
"Synopsis" by , How did electricity enter everyday life in America? Using Muncie, Indiana, as a touchstone, David Nye explores how electricity seeped into and redefined American culture. With an eye for telling details and a broad understanding of cultural and social history, he creates a thought-provoking panorama of a technology fundamental to modern life.

David E. Nye teaches American history at the University of Copenhagen. He has published books on Henry Ford and Thomas Edison, as well as Image Worlds, a study of photography and corporate identities at General Electric.
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