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Myth America: Picturing women, 1865-1945 ebook

by Carol Wald

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Carol Wald's 1982 poster for the 50th anniversary of the Detroit Artists Market. Carol Wald signs the beam at the Scarab Club in Detroit. Myth America: Picturing Women, 1865-1945 (New York: Pantheon Books, 1975). Carol S. Wald (/wɔːld/; January 21, 1935 – September 8, 2000) was an American artist who was also widely known for her talents as an illustrator. Carol Wald: Sequences and Transformations (Youngstown, Ohio: Butler Institute of American Art, 1992).

Myth America: Picturing Women, 1865-1945 (New York: Pantheon Books, 1975).

Carol Wald was born in Detroit, Michigan where she began studying art at age twelve. At age sixteen, while still a student at Cass Technical High School in Detroit, her talent was recognized by the mayor of Detroit, Albert Cobo, and in 1954 was awarded a four year scholarship at the Art School of the Society of Arts and Crafts in Detroit. Article from the Detroit News dated January 31, 1998 Entry in AskArt.

Myth America: Picturing Women 1865-1945 by Carol Wald & Judith Papachristou. Dad The Veteran The Myth The Legend US USA Flag United States of America soldier Vet Veterans SVG Cutting File Cricut Silhouette vector.

Pictorial representations of Mulier Americana Masscultis from the Civil War to WW II, classified under such rubrics as sweetheart, temptress, homemaker, working girl, patriotic inspiration. The illustrations (from posters, sheet music, advertisements, postcards, et. are supplemented with an explanatory text by Judith Papachristou.

large glossy illustrated paperback
This book consists primarily of innumerable black-and-white (or sepia-and-white) illustrations, plus a few in full color, showing how women were depicted in American advertisements and related paper ephemera such as calendars, sheet-music covers, and postcards between 1865 and 1945. The Ideal Woman is shown in various roles, including work and sports and even war, but always, of course, devoted chiefly to hearth and home. She becomes more able to move in the outer world, for instance taking a job in the office or going to college, and more permitted to hint at her sexuality as time marches on, but she doesn’t really change very much: she remains young, beautiful, Caucasian, and possessed of an air of wholesome and rather helpless innocence.

The fairly brief text contrasts the reality of women’s lives and roles during these periods with the impression conveyed by the idealized images. Oddly, it doesn’t mention the Caucasian aspect of the images; most of the very few black women shown are Aunt-Jemima caricatures that are downright painful to look at, and even the more attractive ones are still servants.

The book contains few surprises, but it is interesting to see all the images together. It would really be fascinating to see a similar book showing advertisements that feature women (as of course many still do) from 1945 to the present day: what has changed…and what hasn’t?
Carol Wald must have had her finger on a vast printed paper resource to collate this book of images. She was known as a graphic designer (covers for Time, Saturday Review, Business Week and Fortune and I recall one for the National Lampoon) and a painter. 'Myth America' seems to be her only book, she died in 2000.

The pages have a rather unique design because all the images are presented as collages throughout the book. The material dates from 1865 to 1945 and is taken from magazine ads, postcards, posters, sheet-music covers and trade cards. The eight chapters kick off with Sugar & Spice: Little girls and everything nice. The chapters move through female life to chapter eight: America Hurrah! and Maidens in Uniform.

All the illustrations reflect the popular visual view of the American woman, most likely created by men as women were hardly involved in editorial or commercial printing. There are most likely over a thousand pictures in these pages. I can remember when I first saw the book years ago I was rather impressed with the busy, exuberant collage format but now it looks rather dated, not helped either by being printed in dark sepia, though there are several all color pages.

'Myth America', with its unique looking pages, is an interesting but dated look at past ladies.

***LOOK AT SOME INSIDE PAGES by clicking 'customer images' under the cover.
Myth America: Picturing women, 1865-1945 ebook
Carol Wald
EPUB size:
1425 kb
FB2 size:
1951 kb
DJVU size:
1791 kb
Pantheon Books; 1st edition (1975)
182 pages
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