Steamship Travel in the Interwar Years: Tourist Third Cabin offers a window into a bygone era in which modern steamships like the Queen Mary, the Normandie, and the Olympic transported new breeds of tourists between Europe and North America, and dazzled them with their technological marvels and palatial interiors. The interwar period saw the birth of mass transatlantic tourism as women, students, and ordinary people took to the seas in search of education, fun, and freedom. It was also a period of tumultuous social and cultural change. Historians Lorraine Coons and Alexander Varias offer an intimate glimpse of the microcosm of the changing world that was the luxury liner. From crew members to passengers, ship decor to technological innovation, through labour unrest and political upheaval, we see the social world and the business of travel at the dawn of the modern age.
`The last great age of ocean liners was also a period of great changes: in clientele, design, and even the function of the giant passenger ships that traversed the Atlantic. Lorraine Coons and Alexander Varias have succeeded in recreating that social and cultural milieu. They take us into the cabins, the crew quarters, the luxurious public rooms, and the design studios of the Queen Mary and Normandie. And while seeking to capture the common experience of these liners, they are also sensitive to the variations between classes, ships, and the very identity companies like Cunard or the French Line sought to project in modern times'. Michael Miller, The University of Miami.
Dr. Lorraine Coons holds a PhD from New York University in the area of Modern European Social History. Her area of research interest is European social and women's history. Publications include the books "Orphans" of the Sweated Trades: Women Homeworkers in the Parisian Garment Industry (1860-1915) and "Tourist Third Cabin": Steamship Travel in the Interwar Years (co-authored with Dr. Alexander Varias). She is chair of Chestnut Hill College's History and Political Science Department, teaches courses on modern Europe and Women's and Social History, and coordinates the college's Women's Studies Minor program. Dr. Alexander Varias holds a PhD from New York University in Modern French History/Intellectual History. His books include "Tourist Third Cabin: Steamship Travel in the Interwar Years (co-authored with Dr. Lorraine Coons) and Paris and the Anarchists: Aesthetes and Subversives During the Fin de Siecle. He has published numerous scholarly articles on cultural history and has been a travel writer for several publications. He has lectured at sea with several lines including Cunard Linea and Holland America. He teaches history and humanities courses at Villanova University.