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"The highly commendable purpose of Small Worlds is to portray the children of America's past as historical actors in their own right. In spite of the many difficulties presented by the scant historical evidence pertaining to children, the authors in this collection have constructed significant and original narratives relating vivid stories of forgotten younger citizens. Balanced and sensitive to issues of race, class, and gender, Small Worlds is an important and timely addition to the swelling volume of literature pertaining to the history of American children."—Joseph M. Hawes, author of The Children's Rights Movement in the United States
"This book represents a new and imaginative reconception of the American experience. . . . Especially noteworthy is the emphasis on material culture."—David M. Katzman, author of Seven Days a Week: Women and Domestic Service in Industrializing America
Author Biography: Elliott West is professor of history at the University of Arkansas and author of The Contested Plains: Indians, Goldseekers, and the Rush to Colorado, which won the Francis Parkman Prize, the Pen Center West Award, the Ray Allen Billington Prize, the Caughey Western History Prize, the Western Writers of America Spur Award, and the Caroline Bancroft Prize.
Paula Petrik is associate professor of history at the University of Maine and author of No Step Backward: Women and the Family on the Rocky Mountain Mining Frontier, Helena, Montana, 1865-1900.
Contributors: David Nasaw, Elliott West, Selma Berrol, Vicki L. Ruiz, Bernard Mergen, Miriam Formanek-Brunell, Paula Petrik, William M. Tuttle, Jr., Ray Hiner, Lester Alston, Victoria Bissell Brown, Robert L. Griswold, Ruth M. Alexander, Liahna Babener
Part One: Allee Allee Oxen Free
Cultural and Regional Variations
1. Children and Commercial Culture
Moving Pictures in the Early Twentieth Century, David Nasaw
2. Children on the Plains Frontier, Elliott West
3. Immigrant Children at School, 1880-1940 A Child's Eye View, Selma Berrol
4. "Star Struck"
Acculturation, Adolescence, and Mexican American Women, 1920-1950, Vicki L. Ruiz
Part Two: Eenie Meanie, Minie Moe
Children, Play, and Society
5. Made, Bought, and Stolen
Toys and the Culture of Childhood, Bernard Mergen
6. Sugar and Spite
The Politics of Doll Play in Nineteenth-Century America, Miriam Formanek-Brunell
7. The Youngest Fourth Estate
The Novelty Toy Printing Press and Adolescence, 1870-1886, Paula Petrik
8. The Homefront Children's Popular Culture
Radio, Movies, Comics—Adventure, Patriotism, and Sex-Typing, William M. Tuttle, Jr.
Part Three: Seen but Not Heard
Children in American Photographs
Part Four: One, Two, Buckle My Shoe/Three, Four, Shut the Door
Children and the Family
9. Children as Chattel, Lester Alston
10. Golden Girls
Female Socialization amon the Middle Class of Los Angeles, 1880-1910, Victoria Bissell Brown
11. "Ties That Bind and Bonds That Break"
Children's Attitudes toward Fathers, 1900-1930, Robert Griswold
12. "The Only Thing I Wanted Was Freedom"
Wayward Girls in New York, 1900-1930, Ruth M. Alexander
Part Five: Looking Backward
13. Bitter Nostalgia
Recollections of Childhood on the Midwestern Frontier, Liahna Babener