Clowning and the circus
Clowning has been around since, well, forever. Yet current clown iconography always seems to tie clowns to the circus, an institution that reached its peak in the 1950’s (around the time of the Baby Boom).
Circuses these days are not quite the big deal as they used to be, though. The Ringling Brothers and Cirque du Soleil are about the only game in town anymore. And with the Ringlings downsizing their animal acts and the Cirque going through their own financial issues, it seems that the influence is getting smaller and smaller. Blame the rise of alternative forms of entertainment available to kids these days.