The Americanization of Edward Bok

The Americanization of Edward BokThis Pulitzer Prize Winning Autobiography Charmingly Chronicles The Life Of Edward Bok, The Longtime Editor Of The Ladies Home Journal And A Noted Philanthropist Bok Wrote Of His Eventful Life, Every Life Has Some Interest And Significance Mine, Perhaps, A Special One Here Was A Little Dutch Boy Unceremoniously Set Down In America Unable To Make Himself Understood Or Even To Know What Persons Were Saying His Education Was Extremely Limited, Practically Negligible And Yet, By Curious Decree Of Fate, He Was Destined To Write, For A Period Of Years, To The Largest Body Of Readers Ever Addressed By An American Editor Perhaps Bok S Success Was Due To His Willingness To Champion Progressive Causes To The Wide Readership Of The Ladies Home Journal Bok Advocated Women S Suffrage, Saving The Environment, Public Sex Education, Education On Prenatal Care And Children S Health, And Pacifism EDWARD BOK , American Pulitzer Prize Winning Author, Was Born In Den Helder, The Netherlands, And Came To The United States In He Edited The Ladies Home Journal For Years During That Time, It Became The First Magazine To Reach One Million Subscribers Bok Also Wrote Books Such As Successward And America Give Me A Chance He Established A Number Of Civic Programs And Awards, Including The American Peace Award, The Harvard Advertising Awards, And The Philadelphia Commission Every American should read this book Anyone seeking to become an American should read this book Every family should read this book aloud for family reading time.Every homeschooling family should read this book aloud and also use it as a unit study.Every high school student should read this book.Every business major in college should read this book.Every politician should read this book.Every journalist should read this book.Every writer or aspiring writer should read this book.I wish I possess Every American should read this book Anyone seeking to become an American should read this book Every family should read this book aloud for family reading time.Every homeschooling family should read this book aloud and also use it as a unit study.Every high school student should read this book.Every business major in college should read this book.Every politician should read this book.Every journalist should read this book.Every writer or aspiring writer should read this book.I wish I possessed the eloquence to adequately review this book with the respect and awe I have of Edward Bok s stories and words With that said, I can t encourage you enough to READ THIS BOOK This is a very odd book, one that certainly wouldn t have won the Pulitzer Prize today, as it did back in 1921 It s an autobiography, albeit, told in the third person, of the editor of the Lady s Home Journal, for a time the biggest magazine in America, which sold over 2 million copies a week The LHJ was not a supermarket women s magazine, like Cosmo today, but a magazine that published Rudyard Kipling, Bret Harte, ex President Benjamin Harrison, Jane Addams s Fifteen Years at Hull House, This is a very odd book, one that certainly wouldn t have won the Pulitzer Prize today, as it did back in 1921 It s an autobiography, albeit, told in the third person, of the editor of the Lady s Home Journal, for a time the biggest magazine in America, which sold over 2 million copies a week The LHJ was not a supermarket women s magazine, like Cosmo today, but a magazine that published Rudyard Kipling, Bret Harte, ex President Benjamin Harrison, Jane Addams s Fifteen Years at Hull House, and some of the most important investigative reporting of the early 20th century And its campaigns had real political effects Bok s campaigns against the use of egret s maternal feathers for women s hats led to the passage of the state and then federal Lacey Act, banning interstate shipment of illegally captured animals in 1900 His campaigns for the modern open plan house, featuring work by Frank Lloyd Wright among others, helped define early 20th century American vernacular architecture, just as his campaigns against billboards, where he paid prizes for people showing the removal of signs, reshaped American cityscapes.Bok himself had a fascinating backstory His semi noble but unsuccessful father moved from the Netherlands to Brooklyn when Bok was six After his father died, leaving the family in dire straights, Bok embarked on an almost too perfect Horatio Alger tale of upward mobility He began cleaning windows and hawking water and then lemonade at horsecar stops to women who could not leave teh cars unlike men His journalistic sense manifested early, when he went to the Brooklyn Eagle with stories of local kids parties, understanding that everyone at them would buy the newspaper just to see their name in print He began a side career in writing famous people and receiving their replies, starting with Republican presidential nominee Rutherford Hayes, and then turned it into one of the largest signature collections in the country In the process, he met almost everyone that mattered in America before he was 15, and got to work directly with Jay Gould at Western Union, as well as publishers Henry Holt and Charles Scribner where he worked under Frank Doubleday in advertising, before Doubleday started his own magazine He started his own Brooklyn Magazine, as well as a literary newsletter, and newspaper syndicate, which especially shared women writers and began the earliest women s pages in newspapers, usually as side gigs when he was nothan a stenographer His work attracted the attention of Cyrus Curtis, who put in charge of LHJ at the tender age of 26, after which Bok married Curtis s only daughter and made a roaring success of his life He accomplished much and accomplished it quick.The word that will doubtless come to modern minds, however, when reading this book is mansplaining, and there is much that rings fatuous and hollow to modern ears Bok railed against women for failing in their maternal instinct when they didn t support his feathers campaign, or slighted their understanding when they continued frequenting French fashion houses He attacked women s clubs for their insufficiently intellectual lectures, and railed against women s suffrage Many of his campaigns, such as his work to improve the cluttered look of Pullman Cars or Americanize women s dress, seem mere pettifogging now Nonetheless, his self important but occasionally insightful book offers a personal vision of a forgotten world, one where women s magazines were among the most important publications on the planet I LOVE this book I am reading it to Hannah and it is a great autobiography written in third person though He was a brilliant, hard working man who worked hard and is in inspiration to us I encourage you to read it It makes me smile. I was surprised to see that this won a Pulitzer, since it s so horribly written Dry, stiff, wooden, peppered with clich s that must have been huge in the late 19th century so many faces here are wreathed in smiles, sometimes twice on the same page Bok dropped out of school at age 13 Maybe he should have stayed in.Bok s is the ultimate Horatio Alger story arriving in the U.S from the Netherlands at age 7 in 1870, not speaking a word of English, his father dying soon after, he and his bro I was surprised to see that this won a Pulitzer, since it s so horribly written Dry, stiff, wooden, peppered with clich s that must have been huge in the late 19th century so many faces here are wreathed in smiles, sometimes twice on the same page Bok dropped out of school at age 13 Maybe he should have stayed in.Bok s is the ultimate Horatio Alger story arriving in the U.S from the Netherlands at age 7 in 1870, not speaking a word of English, his father dying soon after, he and his brother had to support their mother He was extremely entrepreneurial, selling water out of a bucket with three sparkling glasses attached to dehydrating riders of the horse drawn trolleys of Brooklyn When other youngsters copied him, he upgraded to fresh squeezed lemonade and chargedWhenever he saw some product he thought could be made better, he contacted the manufacturer and they always adopted his idea, and paid him He began to collect autograph letters and met many famous men this way Ulysses Grant, Rutherford Hayes, Henry Longfellow, Oliver Wendell Holmes, John Greenleaf Whittier and whoever he met was so charmed by him that they introduced him to their famous friends Thus it was that on a trip to Boston, via Louisa May Alcott, he met Ralph Waldo Emerson, who had already entered a mental mist You might think Alcott would merit a mention in that particular chapter heading, but no In keeping with the rest of the book, women don t merit much The chapter is titled Phillips Brooks s Books and Emerson s Mental Mist Bok went to Oxford to meet Lewis Carroll, but only succeeded in meeting Charles Dodgson On the same trip he tried to meet Florence Nightingale, who was a recluse and wouldn t see him.As a teenager Bok was stenographer to Jay Gould and Henry Ward Beecher Gould offered Bok a position and a better salary, but Bok was turned off by Gould s manner oddly enough and wanted out He wanted to get into book publishing he had contacts with Charles Scribner and Henry Holt Already Long story short, Bok ended up as the editor of the Ladies Home Journal for 30 years He married the publisher s Cyrus Curtis daughter, who was 19 at the time their engagement had lasted four years She merits little mention in the autobiography Which is really too bad, because she founded the world renowned Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, although she did so in 1924, four years after the publication of Bok s autobiography As Bok admits, for most of his life he was so restless and entrepreneurial he couldn t even sit through a full opera or classical concert, until he became friends with Josef Hofmann.Bok s storytelling style is reminiscent of Donald Trump s Everything is the bestthe bestthe best I find this true of the entrepreneurs I know personally, as well They are always selling and ultimately, what they are selling is themselves To those who aren t entrepreneurs, this comes across as hyperbole Who except the most insecure need to constantly reassure themselves that their work product and their ideas are always the best In the Ladies Home Journal Bok embarked on three separate projects to introduce America s women to the best in home architecture, the best in furniture, and the best in artwork they could hang on their walls The magazine featured blueprints and building specifications for small home design, which according to Bok were hugely popular Architects were outraged at the loss of business According to Bok, he got rid of America s parlors and replaced them with living rooms or libraries He moved on to furniture, publishing photo spreads of good taste and bad taste Such was the pressure from his readers that in furniture stores across America, ugly furniture was replaced by good looking furniture and within five years, the physical appearance of domestic furniture in the stores completely changed He then moved on to artwork, helping the American Hausfrau replace whatever ugly abominations hung on her walls with reproductions by artists actually illustrators, but who s counting such as Howard Pyle and Charles Dana Gibson.Somewhere along the way, Rudyard Kipling Bok s friend suggested that Bok name his Merion, Pennsylvania home Swastika Although Bok doesn t say so, it looks like Kipling s suggestion was adopted became vitally interested in the growth of women s clubs as a power for good , but by reading the yearbooks and papers put out by many clubs, he discovered they only discussed important topics on the most superficial level Basically, the clubs were cesspools of idiocy, populated by morons He published his findings in the LHJ, and the women s clubs were outraged When one particular club threatened to unitedly and unanimously boycott the LHJ, Bok instituted a legal suit against them for violating the Sherman Act See what I mean Trumpian He made sure that the particular women he sued were married to lawyers, and these lawyer husbands thought the whole thing was hilarious, according to Bok My wife could never see the humor in the situation, said one husband Bok dropped the lawsuit when the women s club capitulated to his demands Soon the women realized that Bok s mansplaining was correct and appropriate, practical and in order Although they had been angry, they came around according to Bok to his way of thinking.Where did Bok stand on the issue of woman suffrage Well, the book s description above indicates he supported it But his autobiography begs to differ Before Bok made up his own mind, he tells us, he took a poll of his subscribers The overwhelming majority of them were either opposed to the ballot, or indifferent Then Bok undertook a systematic thoughtful, even study of those states where women already had the vote and discovered that in those states, not much had been accomplished by allowing women a say in political affairs Yet Bok kept his mind open, as he decided what position the magazine should take.The arguments that a woman should not have a vote because she was a woman that it would interfere with her work in the home that it would make hermasculine that it would take her out of her own home that it was a blow at domesticity and an actual menace to the home life of America these did not weigh with him There was only one question for him to settle Was the ballot something which, in its demonstrated value or in its potentiality, would serve the best interests of American womanhood After all his investigations of both sides of the question, Bok decided upon a negative answer He felt that American women were not ready to exercise the privilege intelligently and that their mental attitude was against it.Now, bear in mind that the person deciding this is an immigrant, someone who came to America at age seven Bok had not been a citizen for all that long when he was deciding whether native born American women should be able to vote Bok also spends some time in his autobiography discussing the shortcomings of American men Yet he doesn t suggest that underperforming American men should have the vote taken away from them He briefly discusses some of the shortcomings of the American political system for example, no one at all whom he spoke to could tell him, as a young man, whether he was eligible to vote, or how he should decide who to vote for Yet these shortcomings do not suggest to him that American voters overall were not ready to exercise the voting privilege intelligently, because if they were qualified, they would try to improve on the political machinery and political education It s only women who should be denied.Bok took a foray into the Paris fashions and discovered that what was being imported from France and sold to American women was not what upper class French women were wearing, but essentially what French streetwalkers wore He tried to convince his readers of this in the LHJ, but they would not be convinced Paris labels were everything to a woman, even if they had been falsely sewn into an American made dress, a woman desired nothingthan to toss her coat or dress over the back of a sofa and have every other woman present see the French label therein Bok s trusted female friends told him so Bok was bitterly disappointed The American woman refused to be awakened She preferred to be a tool to be made a fool of After another battle, this time trying to get American women to stop wearing feathers, His ideal of womanhood had received a severe jolt Women had revealed their worst side to him, and he did not like the picture He had appealed to what he had been led to believe was the most sacred instinct in a woman s nature He received no response Moreover, he saw the deeper love for personal vanity and finery absolutely dominate the mother instinct He was conscious that something had toppled off its pedestal which could never be replaced.He was aware that his mother s words, when he accepted his editorial position, were coming terribly true I am sorry you are going to take this position It will cost you the high ideal you have always held of your mother s sex But a nature, as is the feminine nature, wholly swayed inwardly by emotion, and outwardly influenced by an insatiate love for personal adornment, will never stand the analysis you will give it When Bok finally retired from the Ladies Home Journal, the newspapers clad for his opinions of women He refused to give them I found this odd little autobiography while looking through the Pulitzer archives, where you can read it for free if you like, and was intrigued by the title Who was Edward Bok and what did it mean to Americanize him Turns out he was pretty famous and successful in his own time and his Americanization is a total rags to riches tale popular in the 19th century Bok was born in the Netherlands and came to America in 1869 with his brother and parents They were well to do at home but fell on I found this odd little autobiography while looking through the Pulitzer archives, where you can read it for free if you like, and was intrigued by the title Who was Edward Bok and what did it mean to Americanize him Turns out he was pretty famous and successful in his own time and his Americanization is a total rags to riches tale popular in the 19th century Bok was born in the Netherlands and came to America in 1869 with his brother and parents They were well to do at home but fell on hard times here and Bok grew up in poverty which gave him the overriding ambition to make enough money to support his mother the way she had been accustomed to in Holland He is amazingly enterprising First off, he changes the penmanship being taught in his school because it has too many flourishes and wastes time The principal goes along with this So does the school board Next, he sells water to coach travelers and gathers coal in the road Then he quits school He begins to collect autographs and finally meets every famous person in the U.S in the late 19th century Poets, Actresses, Novelists, Preachers, even the President of the U.S and various Civil War Generals They all love him and think he will go far He does.The book is all written in the third person It s disconcerting as you keep reading, the boy said , the young man knew , Bok was aware that , and you have to remind yourself that he s talking about himself Eventually, he grows up and he has made all these connections through his autographs and he finally becomes Editor of the Ladies Home Journal Magazine He is wildly good at it and takes it to new heights, the first magazine with a circulation of one million Eventually, he gets it over 2 million He changes America by making plans available for small, decently designed bungalow housing He changes the taste in Art He gets rid of empty parlors and teaches folks to just be happy having a living room instead of that wasted space seriously He led the LHJ to become the first periodical to refuse patent medicine advertising and helped advocate for the Food and Drug Act He innovated literary columns and marriage help columns and a lot of journalism investigative ideas He really did do all these innovative and unique things but since he spends the whole book talking about how good he was at it and trying unsuccessfully to sound modest, it s hard to not laugh at it I m sure it s the somewhat pompous tone of the times that causes this because I really did enjoy this book and honestly, Edward Bok really does deserve credit for having done all kinds of these things andAll in all, I d say he certainly did get Americanized What a surprise to discover this gem I usually read fiction, but this title showed up in a list of Pulitzer Price winners and I couldn t resist This is one of those books that we need to read and re read as America ages we re getting old and grumpy about immigrants and its citizens are no longer hungry for freedom Our ancestors mostly came to America generations abo, and now we don t understand the new immigrants coming to our shores We are starting to not act in the American spirit I rec What a surprise to discover this gem I usually read fiction, but this title showed up in a list of Pulitzer Price winners and I couldn t resist This is one of those books that we need to read and re read as America ages we re getting old and grumpy about immigrants and its citizens are no longer hungry for freedom Our ancestors mostly came to America generations abo, and now we don t understand the new immigrants coming to our shores We are starting to not act in the American spirit I recommend this title What an incredibly intelligent gentleman far beyond his years This is one man we all could learn from Very very interesting Held my attention from page 1. Although this is a hefty book to read atthan 600 pages, it was interesting in several ways.First, Bok writes his autobiography in the third person an unusual, yet successful means to diminish the I, I, I feel Second, the Bok s accomplishments are impressive his scrappy attitude and work ethic beginning as a preadolescent when he came from the Netherlands to America in the 1870s his assertiveness in requesting and collecting autographs of famous people including Presidents , meeting Although this is a hefty book to read atthan 600 pages, it was interesting in several ways.First, Bok writes his autobiography in the third person an unusual, yet successful means to diminish the I, I, I feel Second, the Bok s accomplishments are impressive his scrappy attitude and work ethic beginning as a preadolescent when he came from the Netherlands to America in the 1870s his assertiveness in requesting and collecting autographs of famous people including Presidents , meeting and developing friendships with many of those people his contributions while with The Ladies Home Journal, andLastly, he helped improve some of American society, such as coining the term living room in place of parlors and drawing rooms, mass production of paintings so the average person could hang art in his home at affordable prices, et cetera.Bok s life serves as an inspiration for readers I enjoyed this well written autobiography I visited the Bok Tower Gardens in Florida and picked up the autobiography of Mr Bok, an 1870 immigrant from the Netherlands His story explains his determination to make good of himself in America From meeting U.S presidents and other historic figures as a young man to his rise to editor of the Ladies Home Journal, he accomplished that dream Lots of words I had to check in the dictionary maybe the vernacular of 1920, the year it was written However, I was a bit disappointed I wanted to I visited the Bok Tower Gardens in Florida and picked up the autobiography of Mr Bok, an 1870 immigrant from the Netherlands His story explains his determination to make good of himself in America From meeting U.S presidents and other historic figures as a young man to his rise to editor of the Ladies Home Journal, he accomplished that dream Lots of words I had to check in the dictionary maybe the vernacular of 1920, the year it was written However, I was a bit disappointed I wanted to read about the establishment of the Bok Tower Gardens but the book was written previous to that event Nevertheless, an interesting viewpoint from a man always willing to put in the extra effort A Dutch immigrant with little education who came to in uence a generation through the most prosaic of vehicles, a women s magazine, Bok s is a classic story of migrant successIn a nutshell. Work for your own success, but ensure that your achievements lift up the wider community.

[Epub] ➛ The Americanization of Edward Bok ➜ Edward William Bok – Jobs-in-kingston.co.uk
  • 316 pages
  • The Americanization of Edward Bok
  • Edward William Bok
  • English
  • 02 October 2018
  • 0974290408