- Mad Men (TV series, USA 2007-2015).
From the opening credits that feature a silhouette falling among skyscrapers, Mad Men transcended its role as a series about the Madison Avenue advertising in dustry to become a modern classic. For seven seasons, Mad Men asked viewers to contemplate the 1960s anew, reassessing the tumultuous era’s stance on women’s rights, race, war, politics, and family relationships that comprise the American Dream. Set in the heart of the twentieth century, the show brought to light how deeply we still are connected to that age. The result is a show that continually asks us to rethink our own families, lives, work, and ethical beliefs as we strive for a better world.
In Mad Men: A Cultural History, M. Keith Booker and Bob Batchelor offer an engaging analysis of the series, providing in -depth examinations of its many themes and nostalgic portrayals of the years from Camelot to Vietnam and beyond. Highly regarded cultural scholars and critics, Booker and Batchelor examine the show in its entirety, presenting readers with a deep but accessible exploration of the series, as well as look at its larger meanings and implications. This cultural history perspective reveals Mad Men’s critical importance as a TV series, as well as its role as a tool for helping viewers understand how they are shaped by history and culture.
As a showcase in America’s new “golden age of television,” Mad Men reveals the deep hold history and nostalgia have on viewers, particularly when combined with stunning visuals and in tricate writing and storylines. With this volume as their guide, readers will enjoy contemplating the show’s place among the most lauded popular culture touchstones of the twenty-first century. As it engages with ideas central to the American experience—from the evolution of gender roles to family dynamics and workplace relationships—Mad Men: A Cultural History brings to life the significance of this profound yet entertaining series.
Introduction: A mad age
Part I. Mad Men as America
1. Who is Don Draper?
2. Mad Men and the American dream
3. Mad Men, bad men: American vices
Part II. Mad Men and culture
4. A Mad Men reading list
5. The music of Mad Men: satisfaction not guaranteed
6. Mad Men and the movies
7. The science fiction of Mad Men
Part III. Mad Men and history
8. Mad Men and nostalgia
9. Mad Men vs. the youth counterculture of the 1960s
10. Mad Men goes west: California dreamin'
Part IV. Mad Women
11. Joan: the feminine ideal?
12. Peggy: creating the modern woman
13. Betty: diary of a mad housewife
The episodes: an opinionated compendium.
M. Keith Booker is professor of English and director of the Program in Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies at the University of Arkansas. He has written or edited more than 40 books on literature and popular culture. His books in clude Drawn to Television: Prime-Time Animated Series from The Flintstones to Family Guy (2006) and Historical Dictionary of American Cinema (2011).
Bob Batchelor is a cultural historian who has written or edited more than 25 books on popular culture, modern American literature, and mass communications. Among his books are John Updike: A Critical Biography (2013) and Gatsby: The Cultural History of the Great American Novel (Rowman & Littlefield, 2014).
[Reviewed by] Adriana Tulio Baggio.
In: Journalism & Mass Communication Quarterly [Online first] (01.01.2019);
(Federal University of Paraná and Federal University of Technology - Paraná, Curitiba, Brazil)
Booker, M. Keith / Batchelor, Bob
Mad Men: A Cultural History.
Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield 2016, xxii, 293 p., ill., 24 cm.
(The Cultural History of Television.).
ISBN 9781442261457 (hb.)
ISBN 9781442261464 (eb.)
[Bibl. refs.: p. 281-285]