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What is the legacy of the architectural and design movement of the mid-twentieth century? Did it deliver its promised vision of an egalitarian, democratic society supported by aesthetically simple, mass-produced goods whose forms fulfilled their utilitarian functions? In this provocative book, first published in 1995 to critical acclaim, design historian Penny Sparke embraces the awkward question of gender and aesthetic preference. Ranging across histories of domesticity and consumerism, as well as modern design and cultural theories, Sparke offers a new take on the history of modern material culture.