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Taking the Wheel (92 Edition)by Virginia Scharff
Synopses & ReviewsPlease note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.
The twentieth-century rise of the automobile collided head on with Victorian prescriptions for the proper role and place of women in society. Gender conventions cast women as too weak, dependent, and flighty to manage the fiery motored beast. Overcoming that stereotype was as difficult for women as gaining access to the vote, the professions, and education, yet their personal feats of driving in both war and peace demolished the gender barriers against their taking the road. After women proved once and for all that they could drive under the worst conditions in World War I, they adapted the automobile to their domestic roles in urban society during the 1920s. Written with flair and verve, this volume displays Scharff's erudition in social, cultural, gender, and technological history.
Book News Annotation:
Scharff's entertaining and erudite look at the "gendering of automobility" was originally published in 1991 by the Free Press.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Scharff looks at women's struggles to be accepted as drivers.
Though millions of women drive regularly, the image of the flighty "woman driver" continues to stigmatize their abilities. Scharff travels back in time to explore how the first automobiles collided with cultural and sexual notions of feminine nature and how women have influenced the car industry as a whole.
Includes bibliographical references (p. 177-212) and index.
About the Author
Virginia Scharff is professor of history at the University of New Mexico.
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