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Houdini, Tarzan, and the Perfect Man
Author: John F. Kasson
Publisher: Hill and Wang
ISBN: 1429930039
Pages: 288
Year: 2002-07-02
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A remarkable new work from one of our premier historians In his exciting new book, John F. Kasson examines the signs of crisis in American life a century ago, signs that new forces of modernity were affecting men's sense of who and what they really were. When the Prussian-born Eugene Sandow, an international vaudeville star and bodybuilder, toured the United States in the 1890s, Florenz Ziegfeld cannily presented him as the "Perfect Man," representing both an ancient ideal of manhood and a modern commodity extolling self-development and self-fulfillment. Then, when Edgar Rice Burroughs's Tarzan swung down a vine into the public eye in 1912, the fantasy of a perfect white Anglo-Saxon male was taken further, escaping the confines of civilization but reasserting its values, beating his chest and bellowing his triumph to the world. With Harry Houdini, the dream of escape was literally embodied in spectacular performances in which he triumphed over every kind of threat to masculine integrity -- bondage, imprisonment, insanity, and death. Kasson's liberally illustrated and persuasively argued study analyzes the themes linking these figures and places them in their rich historical and cultural context. Concern with the white male body -- with exhibiting it and with the perils to it --reached a climax in World War I, he suggests, and continues with us today.
Houdini, Tarzan, and the Perfect Man
Author: John F. Kasson
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 0809088622
Pages: 256
Year: 2001
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Explores the connection between portrayals of the white male body in popular culture and American ideas about masculinity in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Civilizing the Machine
Author: John F. Kasson
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 0809016206
Pages: 274
Year: 1999-05-17
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A major theme in American history has been the desire to achieve a genuinely republican way of life that values liberty, order, and virtue. This work shows us how new technologies affected this drive for a republican civilization - a question as vital now as ever.
Rudeness and Civility
Author: John F. Kasson
Publisher: Hill and Wang
ISBN: 146680663X
Pages: 320
Year: 1991-09-01
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With keen insight and subtle humor, John F. Kasson explores the history and politics of etiquette from America's colonial times through the nineteenth century. He describes the transformation of our notion of "gentility," once considered a birthright to some, and the development of etiquette as a middle-class response to the new urban and industrial economy and to the excesses of democratic society.
Tupac Shakur
Author: Tayannah Lee McQuillar, Freddie Lee Johnson
Publisher: Da Capo Press
ISBN: 1568583877
Pages: 276
Year: 2010
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A passionate, critically incisive biography of one of the most influential rappers of all time, Tupac Shakur, and how he came to dominate hip-hop in the 1990s
Amusing the Million
Author: John F. Kasson
Publisher: Hill and Wang
ISBN: 1429952237
Pages: 128
Year: 2011-04-01
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Coney Island: the name still resonates with a sense of racy Brooklyn excitement, the echo of beach-front popular entertainment before World War I. Amusing the Million examines the historical context in which Coney Island made its reputation as an amusement park and shows how America's changing social and economic conditions formed the basis of a new mass culture. Exploring it afresh in this way, John Kasson shows Coney Island no longer as the object of nostalgia but as a harbinger of modernity--and the many photographs, lithographs, engravings, and other reproductions with which he amplifies his text support this lively thesis.
Holler If You Hear Me (2006)
Author: Michael Eric Dyson
Publisher: Civitas Books
ISBN: 0786735481
Pages: 304
Year: 2006-09-05
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With a new preface by the author. Ten years after his murder, Tupac Shakur is even more loved, contested, and celebrated than he was in life. His posthumously released albums, poetry, and motion pictures have catapulted him into the upper echelon of American cultural icons. In Holler If You Hear Me, “hip-hop intellectual” Michael Eric Dyson, acclaimed author of the bestselling Is Bill Cosby Right?, offers a wholly original way of looking at Tupac that will thrill those who already love the artist and enlighten those who want to understand him.
The Little Girl Who Fought the Great Depression: Shirley Temple and 1930s America
Author: John F. Kasson
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 0393240797
Pages: 308
Year: 2014-04-14
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Discusses the optimism and good cheer that surrounded the adored, young, Depression-era, box office star whose singing, acting and charming smile helped revive the American spirit during the 1930s and for many decades after. 13,000 first printing.
From Coveralls to Zoot Suits
Author: Elizabeth R. Escobedo
Publisher: UNC Press Books
ISBN: 1469602067
Pages: 256
Year: 2013-03-21
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During World War II, unprecedented employment avenues opened up for women and minorities in U.S. defense industries at the same time that massive population shifts and the war challenged Americans to rethink notions of race. At this extraordinary historical moment, Mexican American women found new means to exercise control over their lives in the home, workplace, and nation. In From Coveralls to Zoot Suits, Elizabeth R. Escobedo explores how, as war workers and volunteers, dance hostesses and zoot suiters, respectable young ladies and rebellious daughters, these young women used wartime conditions to serve the United States in its time of need and to pursue their own desires. But even after the war, as Escobedo shows, Mexican American women had to continue challenging workplace inequities and confronting family and communal resistance to their broadening public presence. Highlighting seldom heard voices of the "Greatest Generation," Escobedo examines these contradictions within Mexican families and their communities, exploring the impact of youth culture, outside employment, and family relations on the lives of women whose home-front experiences and everyday life choices would fundamentally alter the history of a generation.
Venus Envy
Author: Elizabeth Haiken
Publisher:
ISBN:
Pages: 370
Year: 1997
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Drawing on a wide array of sources including magazines, medical journals, and beauty guides, a survey of plastic surgery in the twentieth century offers a critical view of it as a solution to individual and social problems. UP.
The Arts of Deception
Author: James W. Cook, Assistant Professor of History and American Culture James W Cook
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674004574
Pages: 314
Year: 2001
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Ingenious automatons which appeared to think on their own. Dubious mermaids and wild men who resisted classification. Elegant sleight-of-hand artists who routinely exposed the secrets of their trade. These were some of the playful forms of fraud which astonished, titillated, and even outraged nineteenth-century America's new middle class, producing some of the most remarkable urban spectacles of the century. In The Arts of Deception, James W. Cook explores this distinctly modern mode of trickery designed to puzzle the eye and challenge the brain. Championed by the "Prince of Humbug," P. T. Barnum, these cultural puzzles confused the line between reality and illusion. Upsetting the normally strict boundaries of value, race, class, and truth, the spectacles offer a revealing look at the tastes, concerns, and prejudices of America's very first mass audiences. We are brought into the exhibition halls, theaters, galleries, and museums where imposture flourished, and into the minds of the curiosity-seekers who eagerly debated the wonders before their eyes. Cook creates an original portrait of a culture in which ambiguous objects, images, and acts on display helped define a new value system for the expanding middle class, as it confronted a complex and confusing world.
A Magician Among the Spirits
Author: Harry Houdini
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1108027482
Pages: 354
Year: 2011-05-19
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Harry Houdini (1874-1926), whose real name was Erik Weisz, was one of the most famous magicians and escapologists of all time. He was highly sceptical of the many claims made concerning psychic and paranormal phenomena, which were very popular in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. He attended hundreds of séances for the purposes of his study, and never experienced one he believed genuine. In this book, published in 1924, he described the mediums and psychics whom he revealed as fraudulent, exposing the tricks which had convinced many notable scientists and academics. These included spirit writing, table rapping, spirit manifestations, and levitation. Among those he revealed as frauds was the famous medium Mina Crandon, and his exposures led to a public split with his former friend Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, a firm believer. The book is a fascinating account of superstition and gullibility.
Sex in the Heartland
Author: Beth L. BAILEY
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674020391
Pages: 294
Year: 2009-06-30
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Sex in the Heartland is the story of the sexual revolution in a small university town in the quintessential heartland state of Kansas. Bypassing the oft-told tales of radicals and revolutionaries on either coast, Beth Bailey argues that the revolution was forged in towns and cities alike, as "ordinary" people struggled over the boundaries of public and private sexual behavior in postwar America. Bailey fundamentally challenges contemporary perceptions of the revolution as simply a triumph of free love and gay lib. Rather, she explores the long-term and mainstream changes in American society, beginning in the economic and social dislocations of World War II and the explosion of mass media and communication, which aided and abetted the sexual upheaval of the 1960s. Focusing on Lawrence, Kansas, we discover the intricacies and depth of a transformation that was nurtured at the grass roots. Americans used the concept of revolution to make sense of social and sexual changes as they lived through them. Everything from the birth control pill and counterculture to Civil Rights, was conflated into "the revolution," an accessible but deceptive simplification, too easy to both glorify and vilify. Bailey untangles the radically different origins, intentions, and outcomes of these events to help us understand their roles and meanings for sex in contemporary America. She argues that the sexual revolution challenged and partially overturned a system of sexual controls based on oppression, inequality, and exploitation, and created new models of sex and gender relations that have shaped our society in powerful and positive ways. Table of Contents: Introduction Before the Revolution Sex and the Therapeutic Culture Responsible Sex Prescribing the Pill Revolutionary Intent Sex as a Weapon Sex and Liberation Remaking Sex Epilogue Abbreviations Notes Acknowledgments Index Reviews of this book: [A] vivid reminder of just how national and chaotic the events we call 'the sixties' really were...Bailey's exploration of the sexual revolution offers a subtler sense of the underlying forces of that era, which unified even while dividing a nation and, ultimately, the world. --Tom Engelhardt, The Nation Reviews of this book: [Beth Bailey's] applied research here is interesting, imaginative and compassionate, and the final treat is that Bailey is a very good writer. Sex in the Heartland is simply a fascinating read. I'm sorry I can't call her up and congratulate her on this book in person...[This book is] beautifully shaped, carefully thought out, a treasury of useful information. --Carolyn See, Washington Post Reviews of this book: One of the great strengths of this book is Bailey's ability to make local characters, institutions and fights vital and compelling, all the while keeping an eye on the broader issues at stake. She gives us a vivid portrait of one university town in transition and a case study for U.S. social history. A cast of local characters comes alive...Virtually every chapter has surprising, subtle turns in which Bailey's thesis of historical paradox and unintended consequences is amply demonstrated. --Maureen McLane, Chicago Tribune Reviews of this book: Published by the prestigious Harvard University Press, the book suggests that out-of-the-mainstream states such as Kansas actually were on the cutting edge of the nation's sexual revolution during the early 1960s. --Matt Moline, Capital-Journal Reviews of this book: "[Bailey] points out that those who claim the radical nature of the [sexual] revolution may be surprised by just how deep-seated and mainstream the origins of many of those revolutionary changes were." --Philip Godwin, M.D., Journal-World Reviews of this book: "Bailey examines the 20th-century 'sexual revolution' as it played out in the midwestern college town of Lawrence, Kansas...Bailey is especially perceptive on the ambivalent and conflicted relationship of both the feminist and gay rights movements to the sexual revolution. She also has strong sections on the birth control pill and other moremundane but long-lasting changes in American sexual culture...[A] fascinating and impressive book." --K. Blaser, Choice
American Masculinities: A Historical Encyclopedia
Author: Bret Carroll
Publisher: SAGE Publications
ISBN: 1452265712
Pages: 576
Year: 2003-10-14
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"This is a highly recommended purchase for undergraduate, medium-sized, and large public libraries wishing to provide a substantial introduction to the field of men's studies." --Reference & User Services Quarterly "Pleasing layout and good cross-references make Carroll's compendium a welcome addition to collections serving readers of all ages. Highly recommended." --CHOICE "An excellent index, well-chosen photographs and illustrations, and an extensive bibliography add further value. American Masculinities is well worth what would otherise be too hefty a price for many libraries because no other encyclopedia comes close to covering this growing field so well." --American Reference Books Annual American Masculinities: A Historical Encyclopedia is a first-of-its-kind reference, detailing developments in the growing field of men's studies. This up-to-date analytical review serves as a marker of how the field has evolved over the last decade, especially since the 1993 publication of Anthony Rotundo's American Manhood. This seminal book opened new vistas for exploration and research into American History, society, and culture. Weaving the fabric of American history, American Masculinities illustrates how American political leaders have often used the rhetoric of manliness to underscore the presumed moral righteousness and ostensibly protective purposes of their policies. Seeing U.S. history in terms of gender archetypes, readers will gain a richer and deeper understanding of America's democratic political system, domestic and foreign policies, and capitalist economic system, as well as the "private" sphere of the home and domestic life. The contributors to American Masculinities share the assumption that men's lives have been grounded fundamentally in gender, that is, in their awareness of themselves as males. Their approach goes beyond scholarship which traditionally looks at men (and women) in terms of what they do and how they have influenced a given field or era. Rather, this important work delves into the psychological core of manhood which is shaped not only by biology, but also by history, society, and culture. Encapsulating the current state of scholarly interpretation within the field of Men's Studies, American Masculinities: A Historical Encyclopedia is designed to help students and scholars advance their studies, develop new questions for research, and stimulate new ways of exploring the history of American life. Key Features - Reader's Guide facilitates browsing by topic and easy access to information - Extensive name, place, and concept index gives users an additional means of locating topics of interest - More than 250 entries, each with suggestions for further reading - Cross references direct users to related information - Comprehensive bibliography includes a list of sources organized by categories in the field Topics Covered - Arts, Literature, and Popular Culture - Body, Health, and Sexuality - Class, Ethnic, Racial, and Religious Identities - Concepts and Theories - Family and Fatherhood - General History - Icons and Symbols - Leisure and Work - Movements and Organizations - People - Political and Social Issues About the Editor Bret E. Carroll is Associate Professor of History at California State University, Stanislaus. He received his Ph.D. from Cornell University in 1991. He is author of The Routledge Historical Atlas of Religion in America (1997), Spiritualism in Antebellum America (1997), and several articles on nineteenth-century masculinity.
The Last Greatest Magician in the World
Author: Jim Steinmeyer
Publisher: TarcherPerigee
ISBN: 0399160035
Pages: 377
Year: 2012
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Traces the life and legacy of the turn-of-the-twentieth-century magician, covering his vaudeville successes, rivalry with Houdini, and role in setting the standard for magical performances today.