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American SunshineDiseases of Darkness and the Quest for Natural Light$
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Daniel Freund

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780226262819

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226262833.001.0001

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Introduction Toward a History of Natural Light

Introduction Toward a History of Natural Light

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction Toward a History of Natural Light
Source:
American Sunshine
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226262833.003.0001

This book describes modern American analogues to Akhenaten, Vitruvius, and Linnaeus, who worshipped the sun, attempted to restyle the home for brightness, and advocated a nature for man in which daylight figured prominently. It ranges from Progressive reform to the histories of the city, the environment, medicine, science, nudism, vacationing, and parenting. The chapter also breaks through geographic boundaries. Sunlight was really a necessity, little different from fresh air or clean water. The history that is presented in the book travels into America's slum alleys, medical wards, and Hollywood movies, and also examines miracle lamps designed to renovate the light of tranquil meadows, rendering comprehensible the begoggled chimpanzees lying under them. This Introduction provides an overview of the chapters that follow.

Keywords:   brightness, sunlight, America, slum alleys, medical wards, Hollywood movies, miracle lamps

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