Books Briefly Noted
Adamson, Glenn (2005). Industrial strength design: How Brooks Stevens shaped your world.
Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press. ISBN 0-262-51186-X, pb, $25.
Designed Brooks Stevens created thousands of ingenious and beautiful designs for industrial
and household products – including a clothes dryer with a window in the front, a wide-mouthed
peanut butter jar, and the Oscar Meyer Wienermobile. In 1954 he coined the phrase ‘planned
obsolescence,’ defining it as ‘instilling in the buyer the desire to own something a little newer,
a little better, a little sooner than is necessary.’ This book, the first publication to document his
work, includes 250 illustrations of designs by Stevens and his firm, many in color, detailed stud-
ies of individual designs, interpretive essays, a description of the Brooks Stevens Archive at the
Milwaukee Art Museum, and several key writings by Stevens himself.
Cobb, James C., William Stueck, Eds. (2005). Globalization and the American South. Athens, GA:
University of Georgia Press. ISBN 0-8203-2648-8, pb, $19.95.
In 1955 the Fortune 500 list of America’s largest corporations included just 18 with
headquarters in the Southeast. By 2002 the number had grown to 123. In fact, the South attracted
more than half of the foreign businesses drawn to the United States in the 1990s. The eight
original essays collected here consider this stunning dynamism in ways that help us see anew
the region’s place in that ever accelerating transnational flow of people, capital, and technology
known collectively as “globalization.” Moving between local and global perspectives, the essays
discuss how once faraway places including Latin America, Asia, Africa, and the Indian
Subcontinent are now having an impact on the South. Indeed, global forces not only are reshaping
the South also are adapting to and exploiting its peculiarities. Although the new ethnic food
section at the local Winn-Dixie is one manifestation of globalization, so too is the wide-ranging