Ad Women: How They Impact What We Need, Want, and Buy

Juliann Sivulka, Author
Juliann Sivulka, Author Prometheus Books $26.98 (415p) ISBN 978-1-59102-672-3
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Sivulka (Soap, Sex, and Cigarettes) chronicles the rise of women in the world of advertising to demonstrate how women impact the promotional appeal of almost every consumer product in America today. Drawing upon archival sources, the book presents the stories of women who succeeded in traditional feminine occupations as well as those who challenged their limited social roles. Sivulka places these figures in the larger history of business and economic development and the entry of women into the professions. Sivulka divides the book into three key periods that are strongly linked with economics, politics and women's history in modern America (e.g. one era, 1880-1920 marked the rise of the modern consumer, the advertising industry and the suffrage movement). Of particular interest is the story of Mathilde C. Weil, the first known ad woman in America, who established her own general advertising agency in the 1880s. With numerous illustrations and photographs, this thoroughly-researched and well-written history of the evolution of women in advertising will appeal to those in the field and those interested in the women's movement.
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