|This is a 1972 911 with a 3.2 motor in it. Owned by Mike Norris, a retired Wright State Sociology Professor who spends part of his year in Silver City, New Mexico.|
Saturday, August 27, 2016
Thursday, August 25, 2016
Observations from Ed, who is traveling through Norway:
This is hard to believe, but guess what the biggest selling brand car is in Norway now.......yes, Tesla.
Nearly 25% of all new cars now sold in Norway are 100% electric. There are Tesla's everywhere and we are talking the expensive one. If one buys any new car that is not electric the government tacks on 50% of the purchase price as a tax. With 100% electric cars the government forgives the tax plus one is allowed to park an electric car in any garage that typically requires parking payment. In addition, if one buys a Tesla or other electric car here one gets "free" electricity at government-run charging stations. What a deal? As a result even the common middle-class person here can buy what in our country would be $70,000 for a Tesla S.
|Tesla Model S Burns to the Ground While Using Supercharger in Norway|
Tuesday, August 23, 2016
|The DENZA 400 being quality checked. Daimler extends its portfolio of new energy vehicles with the introduction of the DENZA 400|
Monday, August 22, 2016
From the Library of Congress Photo Collection
Saturday, August 20, 2016
Hi folks -- I got a very late start last night. I finally made it to the Lofino's cruise-in off of Rt. 35 at 7:30 p.m. Hardly anyone there, as it turned out, due to a much bigger event at Voss Chevrolet in Centerville. Here are a few photos of a 1947 modified Ford Truck.
Thursday, August 18, 2016
|September 1991: Premiere of a four-seater convertible in the 124 series: Open-air refinement: 25 years of the E-Class Cabriolet|
Not seen any interesting cars yet John and we've already traveled over 1,000 miles on the best highways I've ever seen -- even better than the German roads I'd swear -- not seen one pothole anywhere which is odd given that the climate in Finland 9 months out of the year is miserable.
But two observations:
1. Why don't Europeans like pick-up trucks? We have seen zero pick-up trucks on this trip -- no company makes or sells pick-up trucks in the Nordic countries it seems. What do carpenters, plumbers, other tradesmen use in their work? Perhaps just small vans it seems. In the USA every third person seems to own and drive a pick-up truck but they have never carried much weight in much of Europe. Years ago Toyota tried to sell their small pick-ups in various European countries (the Toyota Hilux) and that went nowhere.
2. How quickly a "brand" and marque fades once it becomes an orphan. SAAB was the 3rd most popular car brand in Finland at one point with thousands sold. Yet in towns and over 1,000 miles on the highways I have yet to see a single SAAB and the marque only ceased production three years ago. I asked someone "where are the SAABs?" The reply was: "all recycled."
Tuesday, August 16, 2016
Monday, August 15, 2016
Hi folks -- in inserting the file, spacing problems took place. It's all here, but sorry for loose formatting below.
HST 344 -- Science, Technology and the Modern Corporation: The Automobile and American Life
Class Meeting: MWF 11:15 a.m.-12:05 p.m., HM 125
Instructor: John A. Heitmann
Office: 435HM (x92803).
Office Hours: 10:00-10:50 a.m. MWF or by appointment
Blog page: http://www.automobileandamericanlife.blogspot.com
Texts: John Heitmann, The Automobile and American Life.
Ben Hamper, Rivethead.
Jason Vuic, The Yugo: The Rise and Fall of the Worst Car in History
And materials on Isidore.
Grades: The final grade for this course will be based on two hour exams, (60%), occasional quizzes, and final exam (30%). The grade scale is as follows: A 94 to 100; A- 90 to 93; B+ 87-89; B 84-86; B- 80 - 83; C+ 77-79; C 74-76; C- 70-73. A similar pattern applies to lower grades. Letter grades are assigned a mid-point numerical grade. Additionally, attendance can influence your final grade: if you miss more than 3 classes, one letter grade will be deducted from your grade; if you miss more than 6 classes, a two letter grade reduction will take place. A good grade for this course is a C+. Grade averages may be influenced by such factors as trends over the time of the course; for example, how you finish is far more important than how you start. Policies for exams strictly follows History Department Guidelines, and make-ups will only be offered with a valid, documented excuse.
Attendance at lectures is crucial if you are to expect a good grade in the course, and I want you to be at every class if that is at all possible. On many occasions material presented is not covered in the readings, and so many of the ideas discussed central to the development of modern science are complex and often confusing. Your attitude and what you bring in to the classroom can make the difference between a mediocre offering and a most positive educational experience.
Cheating and plagiarism will not be tolerated and offenses will be punished accordingly. A first offense will result in a failing grade for the exam or paper in question; a second offense will result in a failing grade for the course.
Course Purpose: It has been said that the automobile is the perfect technological symbol of American culture, a tangible expression of our quest to level space, time and class, and a reflection of our restless mobility, social and otherwise. In this course we will explore together the place of the automobile in American life, and how it transformed business, life on the farm and in the city, the nature and organization of work, leisure time, and the arts. This is a most complex transition that we will study, as the automobile transformed everyday life and the environment in which we operate. It influenced the foods we eat; music we listen to; risks we take; places we visit; errands we run; emotions we feel; movies we watch; stress we endure; and, the air we breathe.
SCHEDULE OF LECTURES AND ASSIGNMENTS
The week of:
Week 1/August 24 Introduction; What our cars tell us about ourselves. The car in everyday life: the automobile age and its contradictions. Automotive Pioneers
Reading: Heitmann, Introduction, Chapter 1.
Films: “Wild Wheels”; “Horatio’s Drive.”
Week 2/August 29 Putting America on the Road; Henry Ford and the Model T
Reading: Heitmann, Chapter 2. James Flink, "Three Stages of Automotive Consciousness" (Isidore).
Film: “Automobile Parade;” “Gussle’s Day of Rest.”
September 5 – Labor Day -- No Class
Week 3/September 7 Stealing Cars; The Rise of General Motors
Readings: Heitmann, pp. 54-63; Stuart W. Leslie, “Charles F. Kettering and the cCpper-Cooled Engine.” (Isidore). Film: “Master Hands.”
Week 4/September 12 Advertising, Styling, Design and the Art of the Automobile
Reading: Heitmann, pp. 64-71; Clarke, "Managing Design.” (Isidore)
Week 5/September 19 On the Road
Reading: Heitmann, Chapter 4. Peter D. Norton, “Street Rivals: Jaywalking and the Invention of the Motor Age Street.” (Isidore].
Films: “Grapes of Wrath;” “Route 66;" “Detour;” ‘Keroauc: On the Road"
Week 6/ September 26 Religion, Courtship and Sex
Readings: Heitmann, Chapter 5.
Films: “Thelma and Louise”; “Motorcycle Diaries”
October 3 – Exam 1
October 5-9 Mid-Term Break
Week 7/ October 10 The Interwar Years: The Great Depression, Aerodynamics, and Cars of the Olympian Age
Readings: Heitmann, Chapter 6.
Films: “The Crowd Roars;” “Burn Em’Up Barnes.”
Week 8/October 17 World War II: Detroit, the Arsenal of Democracy
Readings: Heitmann, Chapter 7
Week 9/ October 24 The Post War Industry and Technological Suppression
Readings: Heitmann, pp. 133-154: Robert C. Post. “Henry Kaiser, Troy Ruttman, and Madman Muntz: Three Originals.” (Isidore).
Week 10/October 31 Chrome Dreams of the 1950s
Jan & Dean and the Beach Boys
Readings: Heitmann, pp.154-163; Jeremy R. Kinney, “Racing on Runways: The Strategic Air Command and Sports Car Racing in the 1950s.” (Isidore).
Film: “American Graffiti”
November 7 Exam #2 -- you will be tested on the Vuic book at this time
Week 11/ November 9 The Rise of the American Muscle Car
Readings: Heitmann, pp.164-178.
Films: “Goldfinger;” “Thunderball” “Bullitt.”
Week 12/ November 14 Oil Shock I: Japan, James Bond, and Mobile Lovemaking
Readings: Heitmann, pp. 178-184; Gary T. Schwartz, “The Myth of the Ford Pinto Case.” (Isidore)
Film: “Easy Rider;” Toby Halicki's "Gone in Sixty Seconds"
Week 13/ November 21 and November 28 The Automobile World Upside Down, 1980s to the Present.
Readings: Heitmann, pp.185-194, "The
Filming of Bullit"(Isidore); Luscombe, Belinda. “The Tao of Vin Diesel: Millions of Fans are Inspride by his Oddest Role Yet: Philosopher.” (Isidore). Film: “Fast and Furious; Tokyo Drift;” "The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant"
Week 14/ December 5 The Automobile Industry and the Future; Sum Up
Reading: Heitmann, pp.194-206; Shladover, Steven E. “The Truth About Self-Driving Cars.” (Isidore).
Film: “The Revenge of the Electric Car”
Week 15/December 9 Last Day of Classes
FINAL EXAM, Tuesday, December 13, 12:20 --2:10 p.m. On this exam you will be tested on the Ben Hamper Book.