More than 100 years ago, U.S. President James Garfield predicted that the compilation of detailed statistics would ultimately provide us with a new way to view history. In the 1900s, America did indeed live up Garfield's prophesy by studiously measuring everything from population growth and occupational inclination to crime trends and food fads. The First Measured Century
, produced in conjunction with a PBS special of the same name, expertly catalogs and analyzes the "numerical thinking" that has subsequently taken place.
Authors Theodore Caplow, Louis Hicks, and TV host Ben Wattenberg are all accomplished social scientists who have collectively produced dozens of books, articles, and television shows on the trends these statistics amplify. Here, they compile statistics derived from government sources and independent polling data into sections on work, education, family, religion, money, politics, business, and more. Each is further divided into single-page essays that begin with one overarching theme ("The concentration of working women in a few occupations diminished as they found employment throughout the economy") and conclude with charts and graphs that underscore the point (in this case, precisely how women left farming, domestic, and factory work from 1900 through 1998 for clerical and sales jobs, teaching, nursing, and other professional occupations). All in all, a highly informative--and entertaining--read. --Howard Rothman
From Publishers Weekly
In The First Measured Century: An Illustrated Guide to Trends in America, 1900-2000, sociologists Theodore Caplow and Louis Hicks and journalist Ben J. Wattenberg present cogent information on measurable aspects of modern life (population, health, work, religion, money, etc.) in an easy-to-read and engaging format featuring text accompanied by graphic illustrations. Readers will not be surprised to find out that Americans are healthier today than they were at the beginning of the century, but they may be surprisedAand reassuredAto learn that parents spend more time with their children now than they did 100 years ago. A three-hour PBS documentary program to air on December 20 will be sure to boost interest in and sales of this fun, fact-filled book.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.