brought to you by...the homefront since world war ii and the media that sponsored it

January Through february 1, 2015

Every day we invite mass media through our front door and into our home. International conflicts, local tensions and pop culture flow out of our radios, televisions, computers and portable devices. We constantly consume information. The media’s images and messages impact the way we think about our society and the way we act. And this isn’t a new phenomenon. Images of nuclear explosions motivated homeowners to build backyard bomb shelters in the 1950s. Local news clips of protests encouraged others to join. Movies and music videos in the 1980s created stereotypes that influenced out spending habits while creating negative associations with specific ethnic groups. Constant footage of iconic buildings aflame in the wake of terrorist attacks in the last decades caused widespread panic and renewed patriotism. The media informs Americans about their freedoms and identifies their enemies, real or exaggerated. Brought to You By explores four different eras of war since World War II through different forms of media and how those media representations influenced people and events in the Hayward area.

This exhibition is a capstone research project produced by CSUEB history students. The course, “Introduction to Public History” taught by Professor Linda Ivey, introduces a variety of career options for historians outside of academia. The Fall 2014 class was unique this year because it gave students the opportunity to work closely with HAHS Curator Diane Curry and Assistant Archivist John Christian to create and build an exhibit. Students became practitioners of history as they researched, critically analyzed, and illustrated the impact of war on the home front since 1950.

Brought to You By is on display in the HAHS Special Gallery through February 1, 2015.

By Nora Morton