Cars: Accelerating the Modern World

More than a book about car design, curators Brendan Cormier and Elizabeth Bisley present the car as a force for change that increased the pace of life in the twentieth century. Often embodying an image in constant, fast, free-flowing movement, the car has symbolized all kinds of social, political, personal, and economic transformation. 

As the car approaches its 150th anniversary, Cormier and Bisley argue that the short but significant history of this nearly ubiquitous machine is entering a period of drastic change. With oil stocks running out, the climate warming, and massive crowding and congestion on our roads and in our cities, designers, manufacturers, town planners, politicians, and economists are all aware that the design of the car needs to shift if we want to survive.  The 224-page paperback publication features thirteen essays and is richly illustrated with 150 color and black-and-white images. 

Brendan Cormier delivered the Center’s Third Annual Center Bauder Lecture, “Cars: Accelerating the Modern World,” virtually on June 28, 2020.