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Mobility without Mayhem

Safety, Cars, and Citizenship

Dit boek kan gedownload en gelezen worden in iBooks op je Mac of iOS-apparaat.


While Americans prize the ability to get behind the wheel and hit the open road, they have not always agreed on what constitutes safe, decorous driving or who is capable of it. Mobility without Mayhem is a lively cultural history of America’s fear of and fascination with driving, from the mid-twentieth century to the present. Jeremy Packer analyzes how driving has been understood by experts, imagined by citizens, regulated by traffic laws, governed through education and propaganda, and represented in films, television, magazines, and newspapers. Whether considering motorcycles as symbols of rebellion and angst, or the role of CB radio in regulating driving and in truckers’ evasions of those regulations, Packer shows that ideas about safe versus risky driving often have had less to do with real dangers than with drivers’ identities.

Packer focuses on cultural figures that have been singled out as particularly dangerous. Women drivers, hot-rodders, bikers, hitchhikers, truckers, those who “drive while black,” and road ragers have all been targets of fear. As Packer debunks claims about the dangers posed by each figure, he exposes biases against marginalized populations, anxieties about social change, and commercial and political desires to profit by fomenting fear. Certain populations have been labeled as dangerous or deviant, he argues, to legitimize monitoring and regulation and, ultimately, to curtail access to automotive mobility. Packer reveals how the boundary between personal freedom and social constraint is continually renegotiated in discussions about safe, proper driving.

Van Publishers Weekly

17-12-2007 – In his dense cultural history of the car in post-WWII society, Packer logically distills the complex relationship between Americans, their automobiles and their love and fear of driving. North Carolina State University professor Packer examines a variety of issues, including the evolution of the station wagon from outdoorsy sport vehicle to family car, the explosion of CB radio use among truckers in the 1970s and the significance of Cadillacs to African-Americans (Ralph Ellison dubbed them coon cages in his story Cadillac Flamb ). The author carefully lays out the emergence of automobility or the organization of society based on the desires of an automobile-addicted population following the country's first major expansion of its highway network (and subsequent increase of government regulations for those highways). Packer rattles off stats and studies with ease, though at times his prose can be more cumbersome than informative. But by choosing to study cultural evidence films, advertising, magazine articles and others and centering each of his chapters on a specific demographic group for example, hot-rodders, hitchhikers, suburbanites Packer produces a well-rounded study of an essential aspect of the average American's daily life.


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Mobility without Mayhem
Bekijk in iTunes
  • € 23,99
  • Beschikbaar op iPhone, iPad, iPod touch en Mac.
  • Categorie: Vervoer
  • Publicatiedatum: 05-02-2008
  • Uitgever: Duke University Press
  • Tekstlengte: 360 pagina's
  • Taal: Engels
  • Vereisten: Om dit boek te bekijken moet je een iOS apparaat hebben met iBooks 1.5 of nieuwer en iOS 4.3.3 of nieuwer of een Mac met iBooks 1.0 of nieuwer en OS X 10.9 of nieuwer.


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