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Distributed for Bodleian Library Publishing

Vintage Advertising

An A to Z

Taking readers on a journey through the colorful history of advertising, this book showcases one of the most important and extensive collections of printed ephemera in the world to uncover rarely-seen examples of ads, posters, and handbills. How did the advertisers of the past sell electric corsets, carbolic smoke balls, or the first televisions? Which celebrities endorsed which products? How did innovations in printing techniques and design play a part in the evolution of advertising? What can these items tell us about class, transport, war, and even the royal family?

Richly illustrated with over one hundred images from the Bodleian Library’s John Johnson Collection, Vintage Advertising: An A to Z takes a fresh look at historical advertising through a series of thematic and chronological juxtapositions, with topics arranged alphabetically from Art to Zeitgeist to provide striking, often unexpected, insights into changing culture, politics, and technology. Topics include new fashion trends such as patterned hosiery and the advertisement of new medical treatments, tonics, and devices. These advertisements shed new light on social issues such as the changing roles of women and the rising middle class. Highlighting how nineteenth- and early twentieth-century advertisements often capture the spirit of their age, each page is a rich repository of information, a new piece of the jigsaw puzzle of the past.

144 pages | 109 color plates | 7.75 x 7.75

History: European History

Media Studies

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Table of Contents


A to Z
The John Johnson Collection of Printed Ephemera
Further Reading
Picture credits

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