Thursday, May 1, 2008

Streamlined Humans (1934)

This article from the July 29, 1934 Ogden Standard-Examiner (Ogden, UT) imagines the streamlined human of the future. In the piece, Count Sakhnoffsky proposes the alteration of humans to fit the new, fast-paced society of the future. An excerpt appears below. You can read the entire article above.
Why [Count Alexis de Sakhnoffsky] asks, shouldn't men and women have their ears clipped to a torpedo raciness, get their trunks windcurved, be equipped with a set of toeless, graceful feet and possess a filtering device which will give them pure rather than germ-laden air?

Not only has the count, who is to become an American citizen in a year and a half, and prefers to be called just plain Mister or, better yet, Alec, been thinking about what streamlined humans should look like. He has gone even further. He has put to paper his talented pen, from which have come designs for streamlined radios and refrigerators, and drawn concrete examples of the ideal form toward which he feels genuine moderns should be striving.

See also:
Bearded Men of the 21st Century (1939)
Railroads on Parade (1939)


Gary said...

"Look at the feet. Toes...ghastly! I should lop off those abominations and streamline the feet so that there would be no left or right and shoes would be interchangeable."

Did I miss where he explained why humans need to be streamlined, other than to avoid inadvertently putting our shoes on the wrong feet?

Cory Gross said...

So that we can speed into the future without any wind resistance?

Mark R. Brown said...

I'm working on streamlining myself into the shape of a blimp.

Anonymous said...

"Toeless" and "graceful" seem somewhat oxymoronic to me. I guess toes do get in the way when we're, uh, zooming through the air like those people in the photo.

Anonymous said...

Could I get chrome plating with that? If I am going to look like the hood ornament from a 1934 Packard I might as well get the works!

Gary said...

Did any future writers predict the obesity epidemic? I wonder how fat people could be made more aerodynamic.

Unknown said...

Wouldn't streamlined shoes be a little easier than chopping your toes off?

Of course, you'd still have to put them on the right feet.