Friday, April 29, 2011, 3:00–5:00 p.m.
Desire, Sexuality, and the Cold War Body
Commentator: Lane Fenrich, Northwestern University
Someone to Love: Girls, Adolescence, and Same-Sex Desire in the 1950's United States
Amanda H. Littauer, Northern Illinois University
We Must, We Must, We Must Increase Our Bust: Uplifting the Feminine Breast in Postwar America, 1945-1970
Elizabeth M. Matelski, Loyola University Chicago
The decades following World War II were a time of “mammary madness.” From buxom Hollywood starlets, to men’s pin-up magazines, to the sophistication of augmentation surgeries, breasts reigned supreme. This project traces the rise and fall in the popularity of curvaceous, large-breasted women in postwar America and its social and economic impact. Despite the esteem for androgynous fashion models like Twiggy in the late 1960s, men continued to eroticize large-breasted women. With their cartoon proportions, sexual abandon, and child-like innocence, “sweater girls” like Marilyn Monroe and her counterparts, was an attempt to repress women’s growing assertiveness in the postwar world.
All papers are pre-circulated electronically to those who plan to attend the seminar in person. For a copy of the paper, e-mail Heather Radke 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 on Women and Gender
Co-sponsored by the History Departments of Northeastern Illinois University and the University of Illinois at Chicago, and the Karla Scherer Center for the Study of American Culture at the University of Chicago
Scholl Center for
American History and Culture
60 W. Walton St.
Chicago IL 60610
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