Sheumaker - Artifacts from Modern America

Helen Sheumaker

This intriguing book examinessheumaker---artifacts-of-modern-america.jpg how material objects of the 20th century―ranging from articles of clothing to tools and weapons, communication devices, and toys and games―reflect dominant ideas and testify to the ways social change happens.

Supplies numerous examples of the ways in which American innovation depended on immigrants who invented new technologies and contributed immeasurably towards a uniquely powerful American economy

Demonstrates how American material life was created through globalization, from products imported into this country, such as Atari's video game console, to American products dependent upon imported materials, such as American cigarettes that used imported tobacco, and the coffee percolator on the kitchen table, serving up imported brewed coffee beans

Highlights how the ongoing struggle to achieve true equality and democracy is evidenced through objects such as a voting machine from 1900, the bus that Rosa Parks boarded, the buttons worn by gay rights activists, and the robe Muhammad Ali, a converted Muslim American, fought in―material items that played a role in the ongoing project of American political life