ABC-CLIO Solutions

Pop Culture Universe

Icons, Idols, Ideas (Academic)

by Richard A. Hall, Edward J. Lordan, and Tiffini Travis, and Nita Lang, Editors

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ABC-CLIO Solutions

Topics Popular Culture/General
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Unique in its focus and authoritative in its coverage, Pop Culture Universe: Icons, Idols, Ideas is certain to enrich and modernize any academic library's collection.

Pop Culture Universe: Icons, Idols, Ideas applies an academic lens to the seemingly everyday aspects of American life and interest to facilitate meaningful sociological and historical insights. The database is organized chronologically from 1900 through the new millennium, with each topic center devoted to a unique decade in American history. The primary sources in each topic center—including photographs, video, and audio—give life to the names, moments, works, and trends that have defined American pop culture, from the Gibson Girls of the Gilded Age to the social media of the 21st century, while expertly authored secondary sources—including original journal articles—explore the role of popular culture in American history. Through the guidance and involvement of an advisory team of leading historians, Pop Culture Universe is continually updated to reflect its ever-evolving subject matter.


  • More than 50 peer-reviewed essays by accomplished authors including Rachael V. Cobb, Robert Natelson, and Alan Reynolds that delve into hot topics such as hip-hop culture, depictions of Native Americans, and censorship
  • Roughly 3,500 entries created for the database or adapted, updated, and reedited from award-winning content from Greenwood Press, Praeger Publishers, and ABC-CLIO
  • More than 3,000 images that illustrate significant aspects of and moments in popular culture
Suite Features

ABC-CLIO Solutions Academic Editions

The ABC-CLIO Solutions Academic Edition suite supplies the digital reference collections and full-text scholarship integral to undergraduate research in the humanities. In each of the suite's 14 dynamic and discipline-specific databases, student researchers are empowered to broaden their understandings, analyze historical and societal complexities, and develop innovative and informed perspectives.

Contributions from more than 3,000 field scholars and real-time updates ensure researchers are always accessing relevant and credible material. Across all 14 databases, investigations into critical topics yield three integrated but distinct content components to support thesis-driven research:

Original journal articles, authored by leading academics and vetted by advisory boards of credentialed experts, that offer varied viewpoints on the complexities and nuances inherent in the discipline to serve as both sources and exemplars of evidence-based scholarly thought,

A robust reference library that draws from 200,000+ primary and secondary sources, including media and data,

And a course companion, comprised of both text and video lectures, designed to reinforce coursework or drive independent study.


  • Coverage spans the humanities, from core disciplines like American history to emergent fields of study, including modern genocide and popular culture.
  • All material is authored by accomplished academics and vetted by database-specific advisory boards, while daily updates across the suite ensure that database content evolves to reflect changing understandings and developments in the field.
  • Both browsing and linear learning are supported by the databases' topic center structure, with each topic center housing a variety of relevant content including primary sources, reference material, and journal articles.
  • Targeted research is served by the federated search engine, which pulls content from across multiple databases to connect students with any and all applicable material. Researchers can then apply advanced search filters to locate the precise resources they seek.
  • Built-in tools are available to support and streamline the research process, including the cite tool for instant citation generation and the CLIOview feature for comparative data analysis.
Advisory Board

Richard Hall received his PhD in history from Auburn University in 2011. He is an adjunct professor of history at Texas A&M International University in Laredo, Texas. He specializes in American political and popular culture of the Cold War. He has taught courses in intellectual history utilizing superhero comic books, and on popular television and films of the Cold War era. Hall's dissertation examined "The Captain America Conundrum: Issues of Patriotism, Race, and Gender in Captain America Comics, 1941–2001," and in 2017 he presented "You Can't See Me!: Batgirl and the Call of the New Woman in the 1970s" at the Popular/American Culture Association's Southwest Regional Conference. His publications include contributions to Movies in American History: An Encyclopedia (ABC-CLIO, 2011); "Art Imitates Life: Nixon as Villain in the Pages of Captain America" in The Dark Side: A Supervillain Reader (University of Mississippi Press, 2018); and the forthcoming The American Superhero: Encyclopedia of Caped Crusaders in History (Greenwood, 2019).

Edward J. Lordan is a professor of communication studies at West Chester University, near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He has a bachelor's degree from West Chester University, a master's degree from Temple University, and a doctorate from the Newhouse School At Syracuse University. Lordan has taught courses in communication theory, public relations, advertising, political communication and media history for two decades at five different universities. He has published more than two dozen papers in academic publications as well as three books: Essentials of Public Relations Management (Burnham, Inc. Publishers), Politics, Ink: How American Editorial Cartoonists Skewer Politicians, From King George III to George Dubya (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers), and The Case for Combat: How Presidents Persuade Americans To Go To War (Praeger), which traces the history of presidential war rhetoric in America.

Tiffini Travis, MLIS, is the adviser for Information Literacy and library instructional assessment at CSU Long Beach. She is responsible for facilitating campus-wide information literacy initiatives and developing strategies for assessing the impact of library instruction on student success. Additionally, she is the subject liaison librarian for Communication Studies and Sociology. Her varied research interests include subcultures, information literacy in the workplace, predictive analytics for libraries, and mobile library site usability. She is the co-author of Skinheads: A Guide to an American Subculture (Greenwood, 2012) with Perry Hardy of the Templars. Travis received her BA in political science from the University of California, Berkeley, and a master's of library and information science from University of California, Los Angeles.

Topic Centers

1900s: The Age of Innocence
• The 1900s
1930s: The Great Depression
• The 1930s
1960s: Swingin' Sixties
• The 1960s
1990s: The Information Age
• The 1990s
1910s: The Age of Opulence
• The 1910s
1940s: The War Years
• The 1940s
1970s: The Me Decade
• The 1970s
2000s: Networked Nation
• The 2000s
1920s: The Roaring Twenties
• The 1920s
1950s: Cold War and Conformity
• The 1950s
1980s: The Big Eighties
• The 1980s



"Pop Culture Universe is ... all about substance. From one perspective, it is an exceptionally clever way to repurpose existing reference content. More significantly, it also includes dozens of lengthy, original essays that are geared toward an academic audience and were written exclusively for this product. This feature makes for a resource that students and researchers of popular culture will happily explore at length."
Library Journal

"Entertaining and informative, social studies teachers will appreciate this database. . . . Recommended."Library Media Connection



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