Remnants of Everyday Life: All the Comforts of Home

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The Victorian home symbolized the bastion of the family, the domestic sphere, and an enclave away from the hustle and bustle of work and the street. It also reflected the changing role of the consumer and consumerism. This section examines ephemera marketed for, and found and displayed in, the home – often the middle-class parlor. Scrapbooks and albums, almanacs, parlor games, portraiture, and other possessions made personal – knick-knacks and whatnots – turned a house into a home. Acquired through purchase, from social circles, or incidentally, ephemera of the home documents the blurring of the private and public spheres; evolving middle-class patterns of public consumption, leisure, and childhood; and the impact of popular and visual culture on its production.

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