The Mechanical Horse; How the Bicycle Reshaped American Life by Margaret Guroff

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This article deals with The Mechanical Horse; How the Bicycle Reshaped American Life written by Margaret Guroff. To be precise, it offers you a brief interpretation based on critical perspective and also a comprehensive summary of the text.

Introduction

The Mechanical Horse; How the Bicycle Reshaped American Life by Margaret Guroff unfolds the importance of the bicycle’s role by going through the depth of its history. The invention and production of the bicycle primarily have made a huge contribution to the emergence of consumer culture in America. She intends to justify the significance of bicycle which is historically more worthwhile than the auto vehicles in order to shape American’s life.

Furthermore, she writes: “But much of American history cannot be told as it happened without the bicycle leading the way”. This statement shows that the bicycle is crucial and inseparable for leading the country to the modern era. It became American culture. Similarly, people changed their attitudes toward health and fitness. They knew sweating makes them healthy.  Eventually, it shaped and influenced the American lifestyle – consumer culture, air travel, physical and social mobilities.

Guroff claims that it is the bicycles that made the women liberation possible. She says: “The idea of middle-class women like me traveling alone, in a garment that barely covers her knees, was unthinkable until the bicycle”. The quote, on the one hand, reflects how conservative American society was before in regard to women. On the other hand, it reveals a change firstly initiated by middle-class women who collected the courage to ride bicycles. According to her, women started wearing clothes they like since the invention of bicycles. But in my perception of the text, the bicycles might be one of the sources of inspiration and expansion of their roles in society.  It cannot be the sole factor for women liberation at the cost of growing education trend, Boer, World Wars, scientific progress, and other significant contemporary circumstances and scenario.

Chapter one: The Birth of the Bike

Guroff firstly introduces us with a Draisine bike that appeared the first time in Philadelphia America invented by James Steward. It had been demonstrated in a concert charging 25 cents, equivalent of 4.60 dollars today. The nasty thing I feel about it is why common people are charged an expensive cost for just looking at it.  Paradoxically, the author informs that the bicycle had been already invented two years ago in Germany with the name “Karl von Drais”. So, my point is that the bicycle was just a copied and was not new the invention in the American market at that time. This is how Guroff sounds contradictory in detailing the bicycle history in America.

More interestingly, Guroff contextualizes the background behind the invention of a bicycle in Germany. According to his account, in 1817 there was a feed shortage in Germany that forced the slaughter of many horses. Therefore, the man-power vehicle, a sort of substitute horse was invented. She further tells a history of a mechanic named Peale who made the iron draisine that could run as fast as a horse. Moreover, the public started learning how to ride velocipede. American scientist happened to diagnose velocipede mania in America and they thereby proclaimed that the walking is on its last legs. This became shocking news to the people at that time.

Guroff explores the inner reality of 19 the century when only a few rich people could afford the horses. That said, she claims that the draisine inspired people to be affordable to all. She also informs that it was banned after it collided with pedestrians in the US and Europe.  As a new machine horse, it threatened many people to walk along the road, and especially in the evening hours in American streets. What I came to realize is that the invention was not welcomed by the then society. So, bicycles were banned, and more reasons have not been stated by the author. Colliding with pedestrians is not genuine reasons from my point of view.

She further discovers that city streets were not paved. It would be dusty and gloppy in dry weather and rain season respectively. In the countryside, it was more deplorable. However, she at the same time tell a history of the road constructions called turnpikes that connected various cities. So, what I think is that the poor condition of the streets might be on the reason behind the ban of the bicycle. But I quite find the author controversy while giving an account of streets construction development and its vulnerable condition. The should have been more conditioned and comfortable for all sort of vehicles including bicycles.

Guroff seems to be talking about the ways in which how the steamboats shaped and sized American life.  The steamboat portraits, not less than the bicycle’s contribution to shaping American life. Moreover, she argues that early 19th century the chief method of long-distance of travel is possible through by water. As a result, hey coined word to “ship” meaning to “send a package”. She further argues that canals were made 3,300 miles long and 30 miles rail-tracks by1840, and private sectors began investing in it. In my calculation, this data justifies the railways and steamboats which brought a great change than the bicycles in America.

Chapter Two: The Need for Speed

Basically, Guroff talks about the expansion of America in the 1820s where more than 15 states assimilated into one including states like Texas and California. He asserts the social and economic expansion in America. The railroads, bicycles, small industries changed hugely American lifestyle. The immigrants came to the US to fulfill the requirement of the population. They started producing raw materials and they thereby produced the household necessities own their own. Craftsmen enlarged their shops and broadened their trade over the country. The Woolen, furniture, cotton, paper, carpet, fabric and factories are set up across America so rapidly.

In this evolution, the writer gives almost no space for slavery, and slaves who were the major machines in those industrial sectors in America. The servant’s roles and contribution were not explored by the author throughout the 19th century. Is it prejudice to them? Of course, she simply just mentions the word “sometimes”: “Raw material also produced sometimes using the enslaved workers”. Why does she not bring the reference about slavery? what does by “sometimes” mean? She should take the accountability of all this. Likewise, she indicates the birth of Wage earner at the social and political level.  After the end of slavery in 1865, the number of wage earner went up to four million.

Guroff now talks about the velocipedes which came to appear in America’s market in the fall of 1868. She relies on New York times to quote that people enthusiastically try to ride it and get it one for each of them. She further argues that school started holding cycle competitions among thousands of people. But the interesting thing is: “no bones or spokes were broken, and the riders came out of the wreck with smiling faces and amind thundering cheers from the crowd”. Is it possible to smile when someone is wrecked with the cycle? this statement has been so much exaggerated to glorify the velocipedes and its riders.

Moreover, he gives a lengthy detail account of ruptures and fluctuation in the market of bicycles in America. Velocipedes were shot down and again resume during this period. In the decades of 1870,  the invention of the technology grew faster like the telephone, the commercial typewriter, steel bridges, electric dental drill, mimeographs, photographs, light bulb railroad, telegraph poles, delivering goods and people ever faster. This is what the author means to show the speed of advancement in America. Despite this fact, Guroff only talks about long-distance cycle race and world records,  and amusement but remains reluctant to how it contributed to their economy and comforted the people’s daily affairs. To substantiate this idea, She argues that high wheel cycles were only afforded by high-class people when she writes “ people had to be well off to afford high-wheelers, and riding one made them feel nobler still- sometimes obnoxiously so.” This implies that the larger portion of people was excluded as it is inaccessible to poor people, women, children, and the middle class. How did the bicycles shape the entire American’s life without such a huge number in the country?. I thereby cannot believe as the author suggests that bicycles changed people’s lives in America because only the rich people would use it for their recreation purpose.

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Chapter Three: The Wheel, the Woman, and the Human Body

In this chapter, Margaret Guroff talks about how the bicycle made the women liberation possible. She gives an instance of a woman named Angeline Allen who rode the cycle in her trousers, calves and puffy above the knees. It became headlines in the many newspapers in America and the news portraited her clothes; her stockings or tights of light blue silk.  Riding the bicycles was out of thought in America in the 19th century. They were supposed to wear long skirts. However, Allen challenged the gender-based discriminatory patriarchal values and norms. This incident served as a source of inspiration for other women across America.

Similarly, America imported the safeties cycle from Britain and got a very lucrative space in the market. These bicycles were lighter, and comfortable for American women comparatively than the ordinaries cycles. The bicycles had the pneumatic tires in the 1980s.  Guroff argues that bicycles liberated women from households. They started wearing tight, short pants, bloomers and skirts. They became free from wearing floor- length skirts, frocks, rigid corset, pointy-toed shoe. Mover, she mentions that people and spectator’s eyes became accustomed to women’s new dress once they show up with bicycles in public.

As a matter of fact, Guroff has not substantiated the facts that what obstacle, criticism, and constraints were there in societies to prevent the women from doing new things with bicycles. Was it as simple as she wrote them in this book? How did the patriarchal society and it’s legacy deal with this issue? There must have ill attempts made to restricts women from riding bicycles. The societies did not welcome what women were doing ceremoniously. The challenges they had to face should have been explored more.

She further says that women’s roles were confined to the houses whereas men would have more privileges in society. Men were supposed to work in a public arena like in politics and business while women for the private sphere. At that time, women are not supposed to go out leaving home. As Guroff argues the bicycles drastically challenged discriminatory values. So, new rules and a new requirement were set up accordingly.

Later in the toward the end of the 19th century, it is widely admitted that the bicycle had moral and medical advantages. The safety bicycles reduced the head wounds. The machine-made both physical exercise and gave fun. However, Guroff seems to be lacking to demonstrate other social, the political and culturally based dimension of women’s role. She is so much confined to the changes merely in terms of women clothes. But, she, except for bicycle, recognizes the additional factors well.  The flux of European immigrants, the germ theory of disease, transatlantic communications were equally responsible for the changes occurred in America. Such changes largely brought happiness, and prosperity to women.

Chapter Four: Paving the Way for Cars

The awkward thing that I came to know is that farmers were supposed to build the roads and streets. The federal state and governments did not take the responsivities for the construction of roads. The roads and private turnpikes were in deplorable condition than ever. But the contradictory fact is that the railways and other highways were already built up in the US by the private sector and why they did not invest in the road and turnpikes building? Were not the streets and roads as important as railways? To what extent was it justifiable to make the poor farmers labor in such public road contractions?

The funniest thing that I knew as Guroff argues is that the majority of American did not have knowledge about what road is called a good road. America had already taken a pace in the advancement of technology, industries, trade, railways, education, and farming in the 19th century. In this context, did not they have a little idea about fine roads? According to her, the arrival of a bicycle in America brought the realization of road construction and its measurement. She reasons the high wheeler cycles were good bikes and rider were good at testing road condition. Is it reliable information for the readers?

As she delves in the exploration of bicycles history. She shares information of the ban of the cycle and the riders. To make the road safe for the public, the was necessary. The protestors who demanded the freedom back to them were jailed. What democracy did they have at that time? It was the farmers and the cyclists who demanded the improvement of roads condition. They eventually made it happen. It is the confusing idea that the farmers who were supposed to build roads demanded the road reformation. The contradiction in the ideas and information confuses the readers.

Guroff presents an incredible number of cycle riders -the millions in 1890. Was it accurate? She mentions that the cycles riding trend altered life for everyone. Meanwhile, she presents another interesting fact that the farmers were not interested in buying the cycles. For this reason, how did the movement of the bicycle change life for everyone as the cost of farmers? This fact clearly shows the truth that only limited rich people’s life might have been changed. Bicycle did have nothing to do with the former’s lives.

She repeats the shot down and boom time and again. However, according to her, bicycle ushered the beginning of the consumer culture in the US. She also argues that bicycle craze had gone away to other mania like auto vehicles primarily to the streetcars.  But she had not given the reasons behind this paradigm shift.

Chapter five:  From Producers to Consumers

The most dominant idea in this chapter is the emergence of capitalism.  All the capitalist wanted the American public, was to buy and buy. Guroff repeats the papers invention that replaced the traditional fiber made papers. Printing technology thereby began to thrive. On the top, the Magazine revolution took place between 1890 to 1905 when 18 million to 64 million monthly periodical magazines were sold in the market. It was a huge transaction in American history.  It was said that the advertisers had a great role in making the revolution possible. Manufacturer massively advertised their products like medicine, cleaning products, foods, clothes, bicycles and so on. Bicycle manufacturers and traders had occupied 10 % of National advertising. They got the benefits from advertisement. The advertisements portraited the portal to a world of adventure and freedom at that time.

More importantly, the concept of the wealthy is changed. In the 19th century, those people who had the land and food production, raw material like tobacco and cotton considered to be the wealthy people but in the 20th century, money became a marker of wealthy. This means the purchasing power of people occupied the central role in the American economy. The rich were those who had money to set up factories and pay the wages to others. This is how America made progress in its economic sector.

But capitalism also came up with some by-products. The home-made products were replaced by industrial products. Middle-class people encrusted with superfluous objects like doilies, tapestries, astray, multiple sets of China etc. It fashioned the consumer culture which seemed to be harmful to the middle class and working class. Especially the middle-class people themselves as consumers not producers because of bicycle industries. Such industries and advertisement created the desire within them to buy more luxurious material. American society thereby was preoccupied with consumption. The value system was created and people spent more money on such so-called valuable goods. Especially the middle-class people became the victim of the value systems because started buying more goods every month and year.

Unfortunately, Guroff has not explored the effects of capitalism in the poor and the richest family. What happened to them? So, I believe that mere focus on the middle class cannot represent the whole American society. Additionally, Guroff, toward the end of this chapter, leaves a piece of information to the readers that the bikes and trolley cars blossomed in the 1890s in American sub-urban. It removed horse-driven travel from America. The price of the horse got lower. Soon streetcars surpassed the bikes because it was no more fashionable.

Chapter Six: The Infinite Highway of the Air

Guroff tells a long story of two-cycle mechanics, Orville, and Wilbur Wright. How they invented a newly designed bike in America. Moreover, Guroff says that they also made a flying experiment for two summers. They tried their glider which had coasted 385 feet. It was very farther distance than others they knew of. So, Wilbur happened to declare his prediction that someday people will fly in the sky. By discussing the experimentation and invention of aircraft, she seems to be showing the nexus between the invention of bicycles and aircraft.

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Furthermore, Guroff explains that the Wright brothers invented the working plane own their own that was based on cycle riding skill. She assumes that Einstein rode the bicycle and got influenced by movement and the balancing of the body on a bike. He made the experiments very thoughtful experiments. To justify her belief, she brings a quote that says: “Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving”. It was found in the letter that Einstein wrote to his son. It is acceptable up to the assumption she made.

Nevertheless, it is not quite trustworthy when she argues: “In fact, Einstein’s ideas on the relative nature of time are rumored to have been influenced by the cycle”. It was just a rumor, not the fact. So, there is no direct influence and direct linkage between the Wright brothers’ invention of bicycle and Einstein’s invention of the theory of relativity. I think it was a coincidence to happen both things in the same period when America was making much progress in science and technology.

Chapter seven: the cycles of war

Margaret Guroff essentially studies the use of the bicycle in the military exercises and in the historical wars like the First world war, second world war, Vietnam war, Boer war. Bicycles were deployed massively on the ground battles instead of horses.  She says that the US military had not deployed the bicycles earlier than those European countries. However, according to her, the United States of America was becoming the most powerful country in the world.

The US military forces did not involve in making the new experiments whereas the European military used the bicycle machines as the messengers early in 1875. The bicycles were much quieter, cheaper and faster than the horses. According to Guroff’s data, almost all European countries like Britain, France, Italy, Netherlands, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Russia had deployed cyclist soldiers in the military exercises. They were supposed to act as couriers, scouts, golfers, and spies for the military purpose.

Since 1891, the American military also started making use of a bicycle in its exercises. The war between Spain – America broke out in April 1998 where the US defeated its opponent in the mid – August. Because of mounting pressure, the commanders of the US army had to accept the use of a bicycle in this very war. As a result, almost 100 cyclist soldiers deployed in the war. However, the bike’s first true wartime test experimented in the Boer war (1899-1902). This indicates that America had not deployed the bicycle soldiers in its military exercise until it knew that the European soldiers kept on developing the bicycle as a tool of war.

Similarly, the motorcycle emerged in the early 20th century before the first world war. And the argument came with a pretention that the horses become quickly exhausted soon and frighten. Guroff writes: “unmentioned was the fact that unlike a bicycle, horses died in the war. And also, unlike bicycles, living creatures are not quickly manufactured”. The information shows that the horse is no more of use in war. It highlights the motor and bicycles excessively.  More importantly, this argument ushers the departure from tradition war phenomena to the modern war.

In the text, Guroff brings a quote of the author named Jim Fitzpatrick in order to show the importance of the bicycle in wartime. Fitzpatrick argues that bike performed solidly in the world war first. In the second world war, Germany deployed the bicycle, tanks, horses, trains, to transport troops and to consolidate its gains after each assault. Moreover, Guroff also talks about how Japan progressed in the production of the cycle and bike once they imitated it from western countries in the 1870s. And soon commenced exporting them by 1920s.

Although the writer is not sure and certain when she says about the war in Singapore, “The Japanese attack the British on their own terms – by sea or over motor- vehicle – that might be true. Instead, 6000 soldiers in the Japanese force of 35000 moved by bicycle over narrow paths through a rubber plantation, outflanking the British imperial troops.” By this phrase, on the one hand, she shows the importance of the cyclist soldiers in the war. Japan defeated the British colonial soldiers in the war and colonized Asian countries like China, Malaysia, Korea, Indonesia, Laos. On the other hand, Guroff’s argument implies to argue that Japan won the war just because they had a large number of cyclist soldiers. What about the bicycle’s role in the defeat of Japan in the second world war? Guroff thereby is unnecessarily highlighting the use of bikes despite the fact that the advanced aircraft, submarine, and battleships, military trucks, ships were used in these wars. These war tools are far better and effective than bicycles.

Chapter: Eight, The King of the Neighbour

Basically, the children, in united states for much of the twentieth century, particularly rode the bicycles. It became an indispensable accessory for the middle-class children, and it is an emblem of parental love.

In this chapter too, Guroff repeats that the cycle was made for the adults not for teenage boys nor for women. Only elite people would afford and use it in the United States. It was luxurious in the 19th century. But now it became a vehicle for liberation. Farmers, school children started to ride it. They could ride in the countryside freely. She mentions a quote from journal American Journal of Play in 2020, “These sports were seen as a way to cultivate virtues important to modern society- such as teamwork- and to foster channel competitiveness and aggressiveness”. This comments not only talk about the positive aspects but also negative thoughts. But, Guroff is intending to interpret the scenario to mean merely positive sides.

Car-like bicycle advertisement began publishing in the newspapers.  It is the children whom the bicycle became more than acceptable, it became a desire for them. Moreover, Marketers encouraged parents to see children bodies and their charisma. This advertisement made the parents to buy the bicycle that will make their son be proud of. More importantly, she writes a statement from a magazine- McClure’s magazine “If he has one of these bicycles, he will be the king of the neighbors”. This is the extremity of the bicycle mania that victimizes the parents and children at that period. The advertisement culture’s is further strengthened by the quote: “boyhood without a bicycle is like a summer without flower”. This kind of advertisement implies to mean that the desire is germinated by the bicycle manufacturer and their public policy. The effect of it can be seen in schoolboy who would work three hours a day after and before school. Did it not disturb the schoolboys’ study regarding the study? Why does not the writer talk about negative side effects upon the schoolboys?

Guroff says that in the second world war, the federal government ended most bicycle manufacturing companies and directed them to produce war material like- machine gun tripods, searchlights. After the war, it became some sort of means of liberation to children and adults. In the 1970s almost three-quarters of the bike sold in the US were children’s high-rises. New bikes with gear came to market and it eased them to ride uphill and explore the parts of the city and countryside. These are some remarkable benefits of the bicycle. But the author does not talk about how labor the children and the middle class had to struggle to get it. Was it not a burden for the parents and working-class people?

Chapter Nine: The Great America Bicycle Boom

I came to know the history of the bicycle particularly about decades of the 1890s. it basically deals with how the bicycle boom brought social and environmental reformation in America.  In the 19th century, the cycles are gendered bias. It was prevailing conservative fact among Americans that bicycle was designed for the only man, not for the women. Moreover, cycling was considered as a victim of slow suicide. This indicates that how people had held the discriminatory values that directly affected the larger section of American society. Later on, there broke out a change in the society and people started to receive it positively. They would use bicycles for the purpose of physical exercise.

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Since the 1960s, the US started producing the European eight- and ten-speed bikes. This trend happened to lower the import ration from European countries. Lightweight bicycles came to the market and were used by even war veterans. Guroff argues that the new ten-speed bicycle gave Americans youth a refreshing sense of freedom. People made reviews like the bicycles offered a new feeling of independence to them. Similarly, she mentions that the bicycles are printed in newspapers entitled “Flying machine”. This reference sounds so pompous because they are designed to ride on streets but the reference is hyperbolically exaggerated in a sense that it could not fly like a jet. I thought  It was a marketing strategy to sell their products. As a result, many American who would go jogging switched to cycling out of boredom and discomfort.

Guroff argues that bicycle became a symbol for saving the environment in the 1950s because America was suffering from air and water pollution. The River, streams lakes was contaminated and it was creating disharmony in nature. That is why cycle activists conducted the first celebration of earth day in 1970. On that day 20 million American gathered and demand for saving the environment and related laws like water, air and endangered species act. It became a political issue and got space. In 1972, there are 85 million cyclists. This shows time for the boom of the movement of the American bicycle.

Chapter 10: Bike Messengers, Tourists, and Mountain Bikers

At first, I found Guroff in this chapter revolving around some changes brought to Americans by bicycle riding cultures. She mentions that in 1970 bicycle courier service was first commenced in New York. Similarly, in 1981 almost 600 bicycle messengers were on the job market. They earned their living with the help of the bicycle. But it simultaneously caused a risk to their lives. It is alleged that the professional bikers as messenger made the pedestrians feel unsafe, and subjugated the streets. This sort of news got spread all over the country. Moreover, she incorporates one of the opponents’ ideas who argued: “the problem is not that their actual accident is so very high”. By presenting this view, the author is implicitly defending the negative consequences that really appeared to create chaos at that time. Though cycles became a good source of making a living, it is irresponsible to dodge the genuine issue.

Secondly, Guroff talks about mountain bikes and the tourism that it has contributed to growing up in the United States of America. She tells that Adventure cycling association and local cycle clubs opened in the different parts of America. For example, in the North of Mount Tamalpais in Marin country, California. It eventually promoted young people to ride bikes. Similarly, Bike rider clubs conducted the hill and mountain riding races. It slowly and gradually promoted tourism in America. In 1980, there were three mountain-bike makers and by 1989, it increased to cover the half market in the US. So, what this analysis shows is that the American economy was remarkably backed up by the cycle industries. Later on, Japan manufactured mountain bikes on a huge scale.

Chapter- Eleven: Are We Yet?

In the last chapter, I came to learn about the author’s rumination on the bicycle culture. She gives an account of the positive effects of cycling. She proposes that riding a bicycle is exercise. It reduces traffic congestion in modern cities in America. More importantly, it decreases the carbon emission, and environment thereby always sustains as natural as it is. However, despite the benefits of the bicycle riding culture, I found the writer deviating from reality. I mean that she is just seeing the whole American society from one perspective.

In my view, this is not adequate to represent the change and advancement of American societies. We need to be very precise and practical while dealing with such a sensitive issue. Does a bicycle make you always feel comfortable? To what extent it is appropriate to hold it with ourselves while, as a matter of fact, the world is at fast-paced changing process every moment? Of course, It is good for health and environment but we cannot stop ourselves inventing new auto vehicles like the car, bus, train and so forth. They are a part of our creativity. In my opinion, they are better than a bicycle in the sense that they are safer and faster to cope with our contingent schedule.

She presents a variety of data and information to assess the present reality of American society concerning bicycle cultures. She informs the country’s first automated bike-share opened in 2007 in Oklahoma. By 2015, seventy-two bike-shares made their presence in American cities like Milwaukee, Salt Lake City, Chicago, and New York and so on. She further argues that the local governments have recently designated the lanes for cycle riders. So, the number of separate lanes increased, and people are willing to ride them. More importantly, the commuting trend has increased nationwide.

She recognizes the evolution in the cycle industries and discusses the new model bikes that came to market. Sports bikes like fatbike and longtail cargo bikes took the shape, and they are used for the outdoor excursions. Later on, there came to appear an electric bike or bike which are used by a larger number of people in Europe and China than America. More importantly, she shows the data about crime declination in cities since the 1990s. But then she mentions the contradictory fact: “More middle-class parents are raising kids in walkable, bikeable cities, which means that yet another new bike form has caught on”. This shows that though there are new versions of bicycles in the market, the middle-class people are only using bicycles now in America. It also manifests an assumption that the charm on the bicycle is declining among people. People seem to be inclined to new auto vehicles.

Epilogue

There are new bikes, new lanes, and new riders in the United States of America. The debates over a bicycle are denounced. Bicycle activists falsified the idea of a journalist like Dorothy Rabinowitz who called bikers “the most important danger in the city” in 1013. But Guroff argues that no pedestrians were killed by cyclists in New York for four years whereas 595 pedestrians were killed by cars and trucks. By giving the data, she seems to be defending the bicycle riders’ responsibilities in an accident. It also implies an assumption that bicycle and its rider never happen to be a cause and victim of the accident. So, in my view, her data presentation is so political.

Likewise, she argues that bicycle is now not only for rich people, the middle class, children, a means of liberation for women in the largest cities where the live horses have long vanished. According to her, the car is too plentiful, but the cycle has become a reliable, affordable, socially acceptable mechanical horses. It carries you straight to your destination and waits patiently at the hitching post.  But what came across my mind while going through this logic was that, does not car take you to your destination? Is it not safer than that two-wheelers? So, her arguments are merely centered more on the behalf of the bicycle manufacturers than its riders.

She also contradicts her own idea when she says “bicycles are not yet part of our society as they are in Europe.” She earlier argued that the new riders and new bikes are growing in America. Nevertheless, she also presents the fact that opposes her former idea. She writes that by 2013, there is a decline in the cycle selling and purchasing transaction for both the adults and the children. However, she sounds so optimistic when she says: “but if the bikes away again, it will be back”. She argues the influence of bike is visible throughout the American cultures: in roads, cars, planes, clothes women wear, and their autonomy, in the collective understanding of war. She, on the one hand, seems to admit the fluctuation in the market and on the other hand, glorifies the bicycle roles in the advancement of the United States of America.

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