In the last decade there has been a sudden rebirth of nostalgia and making part of the past retroactive. One idea that is difficult to understand is with today’s vast capabilities, society should be moving toward the future. With the current state of our country, it is not difficult to want and attempt to bring back the better factors of our previous years. Influence of the media can also be responsible for this sudden popularity. From my own perspective, antiquities have developed a much deeper and different meaning compared to the world’s sudden interest. Although we have collectively advanced in technology, antique factors are effectively playing a dominant role in today’s pop culture.
Many have developed a discouraging view on our current society and think that the best years of our country, and mankind, are behind us. Accompanied by the facts of the nation’s past, winning 2 world wars, conquering the space race, overcoming political conflicts, and arriving to where we are now, one wonders is there really any purpose in trying to move forward. How much further can we really go? According to Stephen Robb’s article from BBC News, Damian Barr stated “We are less prepared for our difficult present by having had a very easy time of it when we were very young… We grew up in a boom – we are living in a bust.” (Robb p.17). Our society has always been looking to the years ahead and to progress; however, we are exploring our previous cultures and searching for originality. Individuals are desiring for something new, but we find ourselves going to the past.
Antiques and period pieces have a challenging history to explain. When they first were manufactured, they were not considered old or valuable at that point. Objects such as Underwood and Royal brand, manual typewriters were being used daily and were limited to office use. During that time, they were the most advanced version of a word processor and the machines had very little monetary worth. Now, buyers use these dated devices for restoration and decorative purposes; also their value can range from $80 to over $200 depending on the age and rarity. This simple example can apply for any type of antique.
Media and other mainstream influences are impacting our world faster than ever before; the general public is finding nostalgic and classic factors in our pop culture. Adolescent society is the biggest audience that has begun to enjoy viewing pieces of our past. This renaissance of embracing the old world culture has spread and developed into many different forms, such as vintage clothing, decor, art, and ideas. Nostalgia has also played a role even in the way society listens to music, such as the reproduction of vinyl records and new artists producing their songs on records as well. Reboots of television shows and films that are set in the past also influence the idea of bringing back these original ideas and versions of entertainment that people enjoyed. Locally, there is a significant popularity among young and old attending drive in movies at Stateline Drive-In. There are only a little over 300 businesses still operating in the United States, which makes the rare experience even more meaningful when considering the national status (McLachlan p. 2). In various forms of amusement, the youth of today, including myself, ironically enjoy discovering these archaic items as if it were for the first time.
As a child, I recall watching one of my favorite television shows, The Andy Griffith Show, and wanting the atmosphere of the simpler times that the series obtained. Luckily, I have been surrounded by a variety of types of nostalgia through old photographs of family, meaningful heirlooms, and older media my entire life. Additionally, I am running at a local antique store called Shoppes on Hudson. I am constantly appraising and truly respecting the massive amount of antiquities. Being that my grandfather owned and operated filling stations during the 1950’s till the early 1970’s, makes me well informed of classic memorabilia that was from that era.
He has given me several artifacts that I treasure and appreciate both the monetary and sentimental value that they posses. Items that were once known as being undervalued, such as antique furniture, tobacco baskets, and record players, are now in high demand. The majority of the items that fall within the title of antiques are holding value and have sparked a large amount of popularity among today’s society. For instance, old Ball Mason Jars of any type are heavily favored due to their classic, old world purpose, appearance, and being a statement of the South. Jars that feature a number 13 located on the bottom are viewed as valuable because during their initial use, people that canned and would often break the jars because of superstition, especially moonshiners (Pierce).
My reasoning for addressing the renewal of antiques and vintage ideas in pop culture was to emphasize the idea of how much of our past in playing a role in our present. Everyone has found old relics that in one form or another has absorbed their interest. Items like Polaroid Cameras, record players, and dated clothing are making a massive return. Society has begun to salvage and search for what has survived from our social history. Now that nostalgia is exceptionally popular, we can see it spread into all aspects of our renovated culture.