New Books Network

Nick Yablon

Remembrance of Things Present

The Invention of the Time Capsule

University of Chicago Press 2019

New Books in American StudiesNew Books in Arts & LettersNew Books in HistoryNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Popular CultureNew Books Network January 13, 2020 Rebekah Buchanan

In Remembrance of Things Present: The Invention of the Time Capsule (University of Chicago Press, 2019), Nick Yablon traces the birth of the time...

In Remembrance of Things Present: The Invention of the Time Capsule (University of Chicago Press, 2019), Nick Yablon traces the birth of the time capsule in the United States. Starting with the Gilded Age, Yablon explores the way Americans from diverse backgrounds constructed memories of their present through the creation of time capsules. Examining the ephemera included in the time capsules, including writing texts, photographs, phonographic records, films, and other artifacts, Yablon details the way these capsules not only created records of their time periods, but also how they show the ways in which their creators and contributors imagined the future. Remembrance of Things Present not only allows readers a glimpse into the history of time capsules, but also the ways in which politics, social justice, and American values were all represented in these buried treasures.


Rebekah Buchanan is an Associate Professor of English at Western Illinois University. She researches zines, zine writers and the influence of music subcultures and fandom on writers and narratives. She is the author of Writing a Riot: Riot Grrrl Zines and Feminist Rhetorics (Peter Lang, 2018). You can find more about her on her website, follow her on Twitter @rj_buchanan or email her at rj-buchanan@wiu.edu.