SCIENCES

Are We There Yet? The American Automobile Past, Present, and Driverless

Norton. Jun. 2019. 304p. illus. notes. index. ISBN 9780393292749. $27.95; ebk. ISBN 9780393292756. TECH
COPY ISBN
Albert, a writer for n+1 magazine, has constructed an idiosyncratic historical narrative of American car culture and its technological underpinnings. His prose is witty and smart, self-effacing and erudite. Readers are taken on a historical tour of the emergence of car culture, from its unregulated and underappreciated beginnings in the early 20th century. For example, we learn early on that the nascent development of the internal combustion engine was not a sure thing; that in fact there were potential alternatives to this now standard engine. In addition to steam power engines, there were early efforts at electric vehicle development in the early 1900s, far earlier than the contemporary wave of Tesla cars. Albert’s narrative is entertaining and informative, and it effectively spans the intersection of people and technologies with American culture and business history. This work also considers the modern question of driverless vehicles for readers who are interested in more contemporary car culture questions.
VERDICT An extremely engaging work of narrative nonfiction for those who enjoy popular historical and technology reads.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.


RELATED 

TOP STORIES

LIBRARY EDUCATION

Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

COMMUNITY FORM

Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

COLLECTION DEVELOPMENT

Kids are using VR to explore worlds and create new ones

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.