From Publishers Weekly
Jonas and Nissenson ( The Ubiquitous Pig ) slyly present nostalgia with a subtext--many of their examples of phenomena which are disappearing, or already have disappeared, are gender-related. Each entry has a short descriptive essay and black-and-white photographs. For example, the treatise on blue laws--which kept businesses closed on Sundays--outlines their Puritan roots and points out that with women in the work force, Sunday shopping became a necessity. Quotes from popular literature also enhance these often ironic presentations, such as the segment from a 1939 Harper's Bazaar article included in the section on girdles. On a more serious note, sexual assault is shown to have caused the demise of hitchhiking; the end of men's clubs like Yale University's Skull and Bones is chronicled by its members; and comments on the decrease in the number of nuns include anecdotal evidence such as film director Martin Scorsese's belief that "most of the nuns who taught him were hopelessly ignorant and politically conservative" and an unnamed artist's comment that nuns made parochial school students believe that Protestant friends would "put a microscopic sliver of bacon in a cupcake and give it to us on Friday."
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.
The fun here is not only in marveling at how innocent and clunky life seemed only a short while back...but in pinpointing the sociological and technological forces that wiped out certain American staples. People
Part of the book's delight is that you can't anticipate what the next page will bring: American elms, the Automat, balsa-wood airplane models...The New York Times
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