tackles—quite understandably and effectively so. Still, Dressing Up's innovative methodologies can certainly be applied just as effectively elsewhere (even if its at-times highly localized interpretations of some of these early-modern clothing practices may not be so easily transferable). However, the problem remains whether the outfits depicted in the visual media of the time were actually wom and hence were actively materializing personal identity in that exact way as Rublack suggests. (After all, Vogtie would deflnitely be a valuable resource for twenty-flrst century cultural history, but its pages surely cannot be assumed to reflect the typical dress practices of all of its readers, even if it does present a kind of shared ideal.) A much greater reliance throughout the volume on inventories, tax rolls, testaments and even sumptuary legislation might not completely resolve this and similar questions, but would certainly help to clarify the degree to which the fashionable clothing illustrated in Dressing Up may have in fact been actively wom to "materialize" identity. As Rublack herself notes, these are sources which are of course exceedingly fraught with their own sets of interpretive obstacles and pitfalls, yet theit admittedly highly problematic nature still cannot fully negate their real potential, if utilized judiciously, to contribute to a nuanced understanding of individuals' experiences with past material cultures. Dressing Up: Cultural Identity in Renaissance Europe remains nonetheless an impressive and groundbreaking achievement. By examining phenomena which many historians have until now largely ignored, that is, not just clothing and fashion but also individuals' emotional relationships with them, Ulinka Rublack has masterfully tailored a wide-ranging and innovatory analysis which dexterously weaves together disparate threads running through the complex fabric of early-modem history. In the process, she effectively demonstrates not only, as she writes, that "history can be about clothes" but, what is more, that "clothes made history." Michelle A. Laughran Saint Joseph's College of Maine


Plastic: A Toxic Love Story. By Susan Freinkel (Boston: HougJiton Mifflin Harcourt, 2011.324 pp.).
Everyday histories bear the stamp of the schools of history from which they originate. They can span a whole horizon reaching from material to social history to culture histories with their construction of the popular mind. Material histories must introduce the tools, goods, clothing, and dwellings of a people, they must place things in the context of values, customs, fashions, and sensibilities which determine their use and value. Likewise, material histories must describe the makers of goods but also identify the localities, regions, and commerce that exchanged them. Essential to everyday history is a literal description of the materials from which things were made and by which they were assessed in value. We need, for instance, to acknowledge in antiquity the role of bronze, which outfitted

Plastics are composed from a range of synthetic or semi-synthetic matetials known as polymets. which lit the royal hearts and kilns of seventeenth and eighteenth eentury Eutope.812 Joumal of Soeial History Spring 2013 Goliath in his meeting with David and equipped Homer's heroie Aehaeans before the walls of Troy in the eleventh eentury B. from coal tar and then petrochemicals. at the same time. vinyl. put people and things under tighter wraps with hooks. the ehair. Beginning with Lucite. the IV bag. Plastie has put a fresh faee of the common and ordinary. which are macromolecules of high molar mass and repeating structures. plastie. and zippets. patented in 1955. ean be considered the membrane of our lives. the soda bottle and . Freinkel ttaees the varied ehains that in six deeades aeeumulated in Plastieville today. plastics proved the power of chemistry to transform our environment. profoundly light and mueh stronger than steel. and birthed new families of superglues and adhesives. Derived from the Greek word. This is made abundantly and imaginatively elear by Susan Freinkel's Plastics. glass. like chewing gum. what is assoeiated with what. If any single material dominates everyday life in the last four deeades of the twentieth eentury it was plasties and the polymers. and replaeement parts for human bodies. the ehemieal industry used polymers to form waterproof fabties. In tum. went on to fotm the shells and hulls of boats and mueh more. timerelease eapsules for pills. the latter an elastic hydrocarbon polymer found naturally as a colloidal suspension in the sap of some plants was fitst vulcanized and synthesized under the pressure of Japanese expansion in the Far East. feel. G. has beeome the epidermis. Though DuPont first used nylon (a result of the quest for synthetic silk) for the bristles in toothbrushes in the late 1930s. DuPont's seeond nylon Kevlar. With an array of diverse and even eonttadietory surfaees. thanks to the synthetic creation of chemistry. in whieh the avetage Ameriean eonsumes thtee hundted pounds a year and world eonsumption totals six hundred billion pounds a year. eement and rubber. and shellac or chemically modified natural matetials like nitrocellulose and rubber. loops. polymers birthed "stiekless" Teflon made pots and pans to be stiekless. plastikos because of their capacity to be molded or shaped. It has materialized a new order of demoeratie abundance and taste. on cultures of porcelain in world history and the prestige Ghinese ceramics. In a sueeession of eight ehapters. plastics first appeared in the nineteenth century in natural form. say in a nineteenth-eentury eity. and see everyday life. snaps. as Freinkel so eolorfuUy and vividly illustrates. DuPont's Veleto. Plastie. with a toueh of poetry. buekles. they attracted more attention when they used it to veil women's attractive legs and strengthen parachutes for flyers. we must reeognize the growing role of iron and steel. the siding and inner lining of our things. This is all well done in a 2011 work. Omni present! Everywhere alive to toueh and eye! Far more than any material. the Frisbee. the disposable lighter. Robert Finlay's The Pilgrim Art. and Bakelite. Polymers' ehains form an endless list of ptoduets and invite a narrative of twentieth eentury atomie moleeular ereation. TTie source and the prestige of matetial is erueial for sorting out who is who. and how places are tied together. She develops her story in terms of eight produets: the eomb. Starting in the 192O's. a long string of polymers came to command the surfaces of our lives. If we are to toueh.

Freinkel anecdotally paves the way for the historian of everyday life to consider plastic as the embodying and informative material of our time. signs. and bedpans and play vital roles in dialysis machines. home and commercial construction with great varieties of flooring. microwave dishes. tapes. the paper bag. incubators and synthetic arteries. and Styrafoam. disposable diapers. and value of objects. and other properties of things. diapers. Finally. as well as piping and hoses vital to the transport of electricity. aesthetics. ships. inks. confirm the practice. and ate the icon of a throwaway economy. waters." she notes that certain bits of plastic act like sponges absorbing carcinogens DDT and PBB. while other non-biodegradable plastics litter oceans. our knowledge of polymers makes us more strongly sense that for better or worse we are lords of our being. while diverse polymers also have a role in the making paper. In concluding chapters. as well as contributing to our language. and materials of so many of our products and tools (fiom credit cards to garbage can lids). Everywhere plastic form the reality. covering.000 different products. with polymers and plastics constituting about 80 percent the industry's worldwide output. "is used to grow new skin and tissues. Polyethylene found its use in packaging. plastics define the texture. strength. and hearts. color. permeability. surgical covers." Nevertheless. In a final chapter. And along with that a byproduct. determine our expectations of sounds. plastic implants change out shapes and plastic surgery is no longer just a metaphor. strength. and lands. destroying ecologies and strangling wildlife. and trains. which covers bodies with acrylic fiber and our multiplying play fields with greener than green Astroturf. Freinkel takes up contemporary ecological concems and technical manufacturing and health issues. In any case. planes. which we meet in yogurt cups. and transparence. In hospitals plastics are humbly cast as IV bags. she talks about the complexity and competition involved in the development of re-usable and biodegradable plastics—and technical choices between bottling with com-based plastics or a polyethylene made fiom sugar cane. linings.Reviews 813 the credit card. flexibility. Anecdotal and chatty each chapter reveals different shades of our relation to plastics. plastic also plays a villain in Freinkel's narrative. and cars. Her Introduction tells how the Second World War got plastic up and marching. to cycle back to the introduction of this review. nylon. saw battle on all theaters. Under the subtitle of "A Toxic Love Affair. lining. In 2010 the "Chemical Industry" produces 70. acrylic. malleability. and habits." Freinkel notes. water and other liquids along with agricultural drainage. Additionally. Plastic forms the insides and outsides of cars. In combination with our burgeoning knowledge of DNA and embryonic stages of stem cell research. plastics tell us what we . syringe. In one chapter she discusses in detail ongoing legal and political battles in Califomia over the plastic vs. air. siding. and electronic and medical goods. tubing. they transform our comparative sense of permanence. Fumishing the covers. and none were decommissioned with war's end. plastics commit us further to molecular self-making. "Plastic scaffolding. Still another is the chemical acrylonitrile. Major markets for plastics include packaging and containers. Furthermore. gestures. New recruits polyethylene. propylene can be made into polypropylene. hips knees.

conscription. and our bronze. military occupation. Napoleon made no distinction between ctime and tesistance Broers argues (103). The tightest chapters are those that tteat rebellion and banditty in expanding France and the Italian and Iberian peninsulas. and above all the tegulat policing of the Gendarmerie. It also offers important historiographical contributions to our understanding of wat and violence. peasants. He asserts the epic tesistance in the Vendée and the faceless ambushes of the Chouannerie provided two prototypes of this irregular war that emetged as mass popular revolt and reverted to guerrilla warfare (33). he consttucted a patamilitary force. Btoers suggests. locals who often lived on the matgin of society. and Napoleon needed political and social stability to ensute that consctiption functioned on a regular basis. and Michèle Pezza (aka Era Diavolo). The "other war" refers to irregular warfare or the war of rebels. the Gendarmerie. Jacques 'Abdullah' Menou. Etienne Radet. Through the use of untelenting flying columns. xi plus 232 pp. that Napoleon was far more successful in the long run fighting the "othet wars" than the traditional battles that marked him as a great military leader.814 Joumal of Social History Spring 2013 suspected all along: The everyday is never ordinary. intetsect with those of the equally violent and colotful impetial officials. protean plastic. Btoers also impressively takes on the role of banditry in warfare in the Balkans and across the Atlantic to South and Central Ametica." highlighting both the roles and practices of the bandits and tebels as well as the men who waged war on them. the rebellious hinterlands of the innet Empire were brought into line by 1810. howevet. and the social history of lawlessness. the Scarzello brothers. Michael Btoets' colorful and highly intetesting account of bandits and their imperial pursuers during the revolutionaty decades at the turn of the nineteenth century makes great reading.). Thete the stories of Giuseppe Mayno. Amato Southwest Minnesota State University Napoleon's Other War. 2010. Chapters 3 and 4 examine this fascinating "wat behind the lines. and .1093/jsh/shs055 Joseph A. an intense ulcet that made normal govemment impossible. or the "blood tax. To succeed against tebels. and guerrillas. Rebels and their Pursuers in the Age of Revolutions. banditry. and bandits against the Revolutionaty and later Napoleonic State." Of all the tevolutionary consequences. of violent men policing an equally violent society (94). is truly the matetial of a mutating age. and smuggling. bandits. By Michael Broers (Oxford: Peter Lang Ltd. Civil unrest and banditry against the state made normal govemment impossible to establish." ttiggeted revolt in the counttyside against the urban revolutionaries (20-21). doi:l0. modem state-building. Broers describes the French Revolution as the "cradle of disotdet. Bandits. Broers contends that Napoleon reforged the Gendarmerie to pacify ateas prone to politicized resistance. Countetrevolution in France and beyond often descended into guerilla campaigns and banditry. Following an intriguing inttoductory chapter on banditty prior to 1790. yet.

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