FUN IN THE RADIO WORLD
First edition of this 1920s American picture book tracing radio signals as they travel around the world, a lovely copy.
FUN IN THE RADIO WORLD
"So here, far, far away from home, the sailors can hear the same music of radio which we do."
This energetically illustrated story expresses the early 20th century American excitement for radio technology. Boyd presents listening to the radio as a universal equalizer, bringing peoples from all over the world together. He also depicts and describes people interacting with radio differently: boys want "receivers of their own, at which they tinker and work," while girls are content to listen to "garden or cooking talks." As the radio signal travels around the world, the differences become more stark, highlighting how white explorers use the radio to shock and entertain caricatures of Africans, who "think it is magic." In western America, a "government agent, who is supposed to look after" a community of Native Americans on a reservation plays the radio during a traditional dance "to civilize them, and make them good Americans." While presenting as a simple children's book on the wonders of new technology, FUN IN THE RADIO WORLD thus also betrays its narrow target audience and limited perspective common to 1920s US publishing. A complex cultural document, mixing small-minded assumptions with world-shrinking technology.
New York: Frederick A. Stokes and Company, 1923. 8.25'' x 11''. Original green publisher's cloth binding with color pictorial paste-on. Pictorial endpapers of radio transmitting towers. 12 full-page color plates with black-and-white illustrations throughout.  pages. A few small spots of rubbing to paste-on, spine ends and corners mildly bumped. Occasional spot of soil to margins. Else sharp and bright.
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