Improvement Era Series: Introduction

Today begins a New Series on the PreCorrelation Improvement Era.

You’ll find photos, stories, ads, cartoons, and other quant, quirky, weird, and otherwise non-Correlated materials.  From Manners Manuals to Make-out cartoons, Splendoor ads to splendid illustrations, there’s much to enjoy.  Also, I will give some analysis, or historical contexts, when helpful.  Enjoy!

1: What is a Latter-Day Saint????











Notice that no matters of belief, faith, modesty, or other “private” spiritual matters are listed.  Rather, lifestyle, social, and personal matters are given precedent.  Also, each “persona” is, in fact, integrated into a social network (goes to MIA, smiles when asked…, purchases wheat), providing some clues into the nature of religious identity: it is a social practice, not a “private” possession.


#2: What To Do?







Designed for “teen” readers, this graphic overtly directs the generic reader to address questions concerning money, appearance, homework, parents, and boys or girls.  Notice that the newly emerged “teen” social role is triangulated between inescapable kin relations and work; and one’s ability to project “interest” or “desire” in appropriate persons and objects, including one’s image, thus rendering oneself not-so-different from others.  Needless to say, (and as other graphics will show) peer pressure – the construction of a self in relation to one’s seeing of others – was happily thrust on this generation!