Women and Smoking in America, 1880-1950

Women and Smoking in America, 1880-1950

by Kerry Segrave


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During the last 20 years of the 19th century, cigarette smoking was transformed from a lower-class habit to a favored form of tobacco use for men and practically the only form available to women. The trend continued to grow through the 1950s, when smoking was a significant part of America’s social fabric for both men and women.
This social history traces the evolution of women’s smoking in the United States from 1880 to 1950. From 1880 to 1908, women were not allowed to smoke in public places, with strong opposition based on moral concerns. Most smoking was done by upper class women in the home, at private parties, or at socials. By 1908, women smokers went public in greater numbers and challenged the prejudices against smoking that applied to them alone. By 1919, most restaurants allowed women to smoke, though most other public places did not permit it. More and more women smokers went public in the period between 1919 and 1927, with college students leading the way. By 1928, advertisers began to target female smokers, and over the next two decades women smokers gradually gained equality with male smokers.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780786422128
Publisher: McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers
Publication date: 07/12/2005
Pages: 251
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.50(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Cultural historian Kerry Segrave is the author of dozens of books on such diverse topics as drive-in theaters, ticket-scalping, lie detectors, jukeboxes, smoking and shoplifting. He lives in British Columbia.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Preface 1

1. The Years to 1880 3

2. The Status of the Cigarette, 1860s–1930s 9

3. Abroad, 1880–1908 13

4. America, 1880–1908 21

5. The Opposition, 1880–1908 36

6. Abroad, 1908–1919 50

7. America, 1908–1919 58

8. The Opposition, 1908–1919 78

9. Abroad, 1919–1927 94

10. America, 1919–1927 98

11. The Opposition, 1919-1927 131

12. Abroad, 1927–1950 151

13. America, 1927–1950 156

14. The Opposition, 1927–1950 202

15. Conclusion 212

Notes 217

Bibliography 229

Index 239

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