Thursday, 8 April 2021

Paper - Material of a Thousand Uses

This guide to the uses of paper is a typical mid-century publication aimed at schools, offering free learning materials in return for a chance to advance the cause of business to a new generation.  For a modest financial outlay, businesses could present a human face and claim to be agents of corporate responsibility.  The illustrations will be immediately recognisable to anyone familiar with the artwork in Ladybird Books - formal, descriptive, slightly heightened in colour and unemotional.  Two themes dominate, the first being to impress the young reader with a sense of the mammoth scale of the enterprise - vast machines operated by a workforce of heroes. The second theme is best described as a thousand things you never knew about paper from tabloids to tissues. It shows us an orderly society where the working man wore a flat cap and foremen wore brown coats - a lost world of stoic deference selectively recalled by an older generation desperate to see it revived before they exit the stage.


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