March 25th, 2007

Studying social revolutions

The Issue
I really don't know if this is appropriate for Little Details...I'm worried that it's not, but I'm really desperate, and I'm hoping I can at least get some search tips, like what words I should put into google.

What I'm looking for is some writing about the big social movements (focusing on the US and the UK) since about the 1920s, and especially how they were involved in the arts. To give you a better idea of what I'm thinking about, I'll include here the way I have myself tried to break down the social movements:
1) The Roaring Twenties (jazz, prohibition, women's rights)
2) The Fifties (greasers/rockers, dawn of rock 'n' roll, dawn of civil rights, women's rights continuing)
3) Civil Rights from the 50s through the early 70s (MLK, Malcom X, the social powers/effect of soul and motown)
4) The forming of rock 'n' roll with and after the British Invasion (The Beatles, the Stones, Hendrix, the Byrds, the Beach Boys, the Animals, the Kinks, Joplin, Morrison, Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, the Who, etc.)--and of course, the whole counter-culture that came with it.
5) Punk (US: Andy Warhol/the Velvet Underground, Television, the New York Dolls, the MC5, Blondie, the Heartbreakers, the Ramones, Patti Smith, Suicide, the Dead Boys; UK: the Sex Pistols, Siouxie Sioux & the Banshees, Subway Sect, the Clash, the Slits, the Damned, the Jam, etc.)
6) Rap (beginning in the seventies--MCing, DJing, graffiti, breakdancing, gangsta rap--Kurtis Blow and the Breaks, Run DMC, Ice T, Public Enemy, Jay-Z, Outkast, the Beastie Boys, Eminem, Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent, etc.)

As you probably noticed, all of these include music, because I feel that each movement has always had its soundtrack.

The Searches

On Google, I have tried:
history of cultural revolutions social
social change revolution music popular culture
Social Revolutions US 20th century
"Social Revolutions" US
On Wikipedia, I looked up popular culture, but it did me no good.

Help!
Again, I'm really sorry if this is inappropriate for Little Details; I guess what I'm really looking for is just some Googling advice, as there seem to be many people on this community with a lot of experience in that field.

Art supplies question

Thanks to everyone who answered my 'would her mother manage a mutual fund?' question - extremely helpful responses.

Completely different question now: main character is a British student about ten years ago (not sure if that makes too much difference, but the action occurs when she's in her late twenties and this episode occurs when she's at university). Her parents, who always feel somewhat guilty that they didn't give her any siblings and had her very late in life, tend to spend lavishly on Christmas presents, and occasionally go overboard in the sense of not really asking her what she *wants* but buying expensive items that they see kids having - modern equivalent would be giving her a top-of-the-line iPod or mobile phone and replacing it every year.

Are there any particular items, or brands, of art supplies that would be the sort of thing most art students could only dream of possessing, but which her parents might buy as a symbol of what I am trying to convey? I'd like at least one of those beautiful sets of oil paints (I mean, for the character, not for myself - stick figures are my limit...). Sketch books, drawing pencils, easels? The parents could easily also be taken in by sales assistants saying 'oh, your daughter MUST have one of these' when it isn't true.

I'll probably have a look around an art store at some point (unfortunately, these pages have to go to my referee before I'll have the chance), but I want to be sure I'm not simply using expensive items, but things which indicate her parents are viewing her as an artist (what they want her to be), rather than what she really is - a student of art history who is somewhat talented but not reaching for art as a career or vocation.

Many thanks!
  • Current Mood: accomplished

Men's suits

I need a name for a designer of men's suits that a man who is fairly metro-sexual and moderately  fashion concious would recognize and be impressed by.  

Is Armani still in that category, or are they doing too much ready-to-wear stuff these days?  

Any suggestions on websites would be cool, but first-hand impressions of how a high-quality suit feels to touch would be great.

I've got a guy stumbling across a suit in another man's closet, and I want him to be 1)surprised at the extravagence of this guy having this suit and 2)really want to see him in it.

Any suggestions?

EDIT:  Modern, normal earth.  Americans living in Vancouver.  The suit in question would be about 7 yrs old, but well cared for.

EDIT II: Thanks guys. I think I'll go with Zegna.

Minding the gap at King's Cross Tube

This is a tiny detail, but my plot requires me to get it right.

King's Cross St. Pancras Tube station is served, if I recall correctly (and Wikipedia confirms), the Victoria, Piccadilly, Northern, Circle, Hammersmith & City, and Metropolitan lines. The first three of these are deep-level lines, with the smaller trains and deeper platforms.

What I need to know is this: do any of the King's Cross trains on those three lines feature "Mind the Gap" announcements? Not all stations do, I know; only the ones where trains fit round curved platforms or don't quite fit for whatever reason. Can anyone confirm that King's Cross is one of them? And I'd love it if anyone knew the exact wording of the announcement: I'm extrapolating from other stations and assuming it's "This is King's Cross St. Pancras. Change here for [all the above lines]. Please mind the gap between the train and the platform." But if I'm wrong, please correct me.

Vocal Cord Regrowth

The Search Terms: variations on vocal cords, vocal folds, regrowth, removal -- the majority of what I found was in medical-ese, which I had difficulty decoding, or not useful ^^;;

The Setting: Something akin to 18th Century England, though it's a fantasy setting

The Situation: Higher class citizens have their vocal cords removed around the age of three, as a way to purify their souls and bring them closer to their God. Not everyone is deemed pure/good/rich enough to have this procedure done, and it's a sign of class as well as religious piety.

The Questions: Even though this is a fantasy novel, I want to keep this aspect as realistic as possible. As such, would it be possible that, after removal of the vocal cords, someone could have their cords naturally grow back? If so, how long would it take and what sort of sounds would they be able to make? If not, would they be able to develop other ways of mildly cognizant sound?

Thanks in advance, guys!
  • Current Mood: curious