The 1933 Chicago World's Fair: A Century of Progress

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Overview

Chicago's 1933 world's fair set a new direction for international expositions. Earlier fairs had exhibited technological advances, but Chicago's fair organizers used the very idea of progress to buoy national optimism during the Depression's darkest years. Orchestrated by business leaders and engineers, almost all former military men, the fair reflected a business-military-engineering model that envisioned a promising future through science and technology's application to everyday life.

But not everyone at Chicago's 1933 exposition had abandoned notions of progress that entailed social justice and equality, recognition of ethnicity and gender, and personal freedom and expression. The fair's motto, "Science Finds, Industry Applies, Man Conforms," was challenged by iconoclasts such as Sally Rand, whose provocative fan dance became a persistent symbol of the fair, as well as a handful of other exceptional individuals, including African Americans, ethnic populations and foreign nationals, groups of working women, and even well-heeled socialites. Cheryl R. Ganz offers the stories of fair planners and participants who showcased education, industry, and entertainment to sell optimism during the depths of the Great Depression. This engaging history also features eighty-six photographs—nearly half of which are full color—of key locations, exhibits, and people, as well as authentic ticket stubs, postcards, pamphlets, posters, and other it

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780252033575
  • Publisher: University of Illinois Press
  • Publication date: 9/12/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 829,142
  • Product dimensions: 7.20 (w) x 10.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

Cheryl R. Ganz is the chief curator of philately at the Smithsonian National Postal Museum, Washington, D.C. She was the curator and designer of the "Pots of Promise" exhibition for the Jane Addams Hull-House Museum, and is the coeditor of Pots of Promise: Mexicans and Pottery at Hull-House, 1920-40.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1

1 Sally Rand and the Midway 7

2 Chicago Boosters Set the Stage 28

3 A New Vision for a World's Fair 52

4 The Vision on Display 67

5 Women's Spaces at the Fair 85

6 African Americans and the Du Sable Legacy 108

7 Ethnic Identity and Nationalistic Representations of Progress 123

8 Aviation, Nationalism, and Progress 137

Epilogue 151

Notes 159

Index 199

Illustrations

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