Retail Nation: Department Stores and the Making of Modern Canada Hardcover – Feb 15 2011
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A thought-provoking study...Belisle draws fruitfully from a vast historiography on department stores...The book's undeniable strength lies above all in Belisle's critique ofthe stores through an engaging recounting of the experience of shopping or working in department stores...Retail Nation makes a timely and important contribution to Canadian scholarship, one that is likely to attract a broad readership. -- Nicolas Kenny, Simon Fraser University BC Studies, No.176, Winter 2012-13 "Retail Nation constitutes an important contribution to the history of the development of mass consumption in Canada in the late nineteenth and twentieth century...Belisle explores fully and intelligently the unequal relations of class, race and gender [department stores] embodied, and an important part of the analysis deals with the gendered relations between the stores, their employees and their customers. The book is written with verve, a secure knowledge of the relevant literature and much careful research, and sets a historiographic benchmark for the study of Canadian consumer society." Sir John A. MacDonald Prize Committee, 2012, Canadian Historical Association
From the Inside Flap
The experience of walking down a store aisle -- replete with displays, salespeople, and infinite choice -- is so common we often forget retail has a short history. Retail Nation traces Canada's transformation into a modern consumer society back to an era -- 1890 to 1940 -- when department stores such as Eaton's ruled the shopping scene and promised to strengthen the nation. Department stores emerge as agents of modern nationalism, but the nation they helped to define -- white, consumerist, middle-class -- was more limited, and contested, than nostalgic portraits of the early department store suggest.See all Product Description
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