Guest blog by Dr Grace Lees-Maffei, Reader in Design History, School of Creative Arts
As one of the successful applicants for the Arts & Humanities Research Council's (AHRC’s) Image Gallery, my online gallery for the AHRC website is composed of images from domestic advice books published after World War II.
|Dr Grace Lees-Maffei|
Domestic advice books are one of several channels through which we receive guidance about what we do in our homes, along with magazines, advertising, marketing, and television. This advice quickly dates, so a continual stream of new advice books is produced.
|Front cover of the|
Creda Housecraft manual
|Dr Lees-Maffei's new book: |
Design at Home: Domestic Advice
Books in Britain and the USA since 1945
Techniques include direct personal appeals, such as advice presented in the form of a signed letter; recycling and adaptation of images; images subverting text; before and after comparisons and novelties such as text and images which emulate stitch, in reference to home crafts. The housewife is shown happily engaged in domestic work, which teenage readers are depicted as design professionals.
This gallery draws on an interdisciplinary research project supported by an AHRC
Research Leave award which resulted in my recent book ‘Design at Home: Domestic Advice Books in Britain and the USA since 1945'.