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Mad Men Unbuttoned: A Romp Through 1960s America

  • Broadcast in Psychology
Secret Lives of Men

Secret Lives of Men


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We discuss the cultural background of the TV show "Mad Men." This is set in the 1960s world of Madison Avenue advertising executives. Embedded in the show's three seasons there are hundreds of cultural nuggets that capture the historical themes of the mid-century - like the diminution of social order to the giant consumerist boom. Journalist and obsessive "Mad Men" fan Natasha Vargas-Cooper has collected and analyzed these nuggets reagrding the social mores of the mid-century. The book will take the richest references in the show and regard each as a cultural artifact - like the famous 1962 "Lucky Strike Ad", a reference to ad-dynamo Julian Keonig, or an Edo era painting that adorns a wall in Sterling Cooper headquarters. Each entry will highlight the cultural context and social history around each artifact. The book serves as a reader's companion to the show, and a discursive look at American history during the mid century.