Friday, October 26, 2007, 3:00–5:00 p.m.
Of Tubs and Toil: Locating Kohler Village in an Empire of Hygiene, 1920-2000
Kathryn J. Oberdeck, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Commentators: Joseph Bigott, Purdue University at Calumet, and Susan Hirsch, Loyola University Chicago
This paper probes the intersections of industrial and domestic toil that can be plotted on the global map of modern hygiene associated with modern American bathrooms and kitchens. Focusing on the products, publicity and marketing strategies of the Kohler Company and its welfare-capitalist village of Kohler, Wisconsin, it traces social categories associated with the “labor lightening” potentials of the company’s tubs, toilets, and electric generators as these were figured in publicity and fought over by various groups of producers, consumers and users between the 1920s and the 1990s.
All papers are pre-circulated electronically to those who plan to attend the seminar in person. For a copy of the paper, e-mail Jenny Butler at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 312-255-3524.
Please do not request a paper unless you plan to attend.
The Newberry Library Seminar in Labor History is co-sponsored by the History Department of the University of Illinois at Chicago, Northern Illinois University, Northwestern University and the Labor and Working Class History Association
The Newberry Library
Dr. William M. Scholl Center for
Family and Community History
60 W. Walton St.
Chicago, Illinois 60610
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