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The Power of Glamour: Longing and the Art of…

The Power of Glamour: Longing and the Art of Visual Persuasion

by Virginia Postrel

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I received "The Power of Glamour" as part of a Goodreads giveaway.

In "The Power of Glamour," Postrel explores visual culture as expressed in (and by) advertising, art, fashion, graphic design, film, status symbols, and celebrities. The presence and development of writing systems are what distinguishes "prehistory" from "history," but Postrel makes a compelling case that what we see--across time and place--can tell us just as much, if not more, than the written record. As a history buff, I loved exploring how conceptions of glamour have changed from premodern religious figures to celebrities from the golden age of cinema to 21st century superstars like Jay-Z.

One small quibble is the size of the book--it's a hardcover, but of a non-standard size, almost a small coffee table book, which isn't the most practical format for easy reading. That said, it's still an enjoyable, worthwhile, insightful read, a lot to process in a relatively small package.

Recommended. ( )
  ceg045 | Feb 19, 2014 |
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An exploration of glamour, a potent cultural force that influences where people choose to live, which careers to pursue, where to invest, and how to vote, offers empowerment to be smarter about engaging with the world.

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