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The Adventures of Amos 'n' Andy

A Social History of an American Phenomenon

Author: Melvin Patrick Ely

Publisher:

ISBN:

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 322

View: 615

In 1930, 40 million Americans tuned in to Amos 'n' Andy, a radio serial created and acted by two white men, about the adventures of two southern blacks Ely follows the history of the show, discusses the strange charm of the scripts, and the serial's impact on racial issues.

The Original Amos ’n’ Andy

Freeman Gosden, Charles Correll and the 1928–1943 Radio Serial

Author: Elizabeth McLeod

Publisher: McFarland

ISBN:

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 223

View: 385

This critical reexamination of Amos ’n’ Andy, the pioneering creation of Charles Correll and Freeman Gosden, presents an unapologetic but balanced view lacking in most treatments. It relies upon an untapped resource—thousands of pages of scripts from the show’s nearly forgotten earliest version, which most clearly reflected the vision of its creators. Consequently, it provides fresh insights and in part refutes the usual blanket condemnations of this groundbreaking show. The text incorporates numerous script excerpts, provides key background information, and also acknowledges the show’s importance to radio broadcasting and modern entertainment.

Black Stereotypes in Popular Series Fiction, 1851Ð1955

Jim Crow Era Authors and Their Characters

Author: Bernard A. Drew

Publisher: McFarland

ISBN:

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 292

View: 882

"Even well-meaning fiction writers of the late Jim Crow era (1900-1955) perpetuated racial stereotypes in their depiction of black characters.The best known white writers of black characters included Booth Tarkington, Irvin S. Cobb, Roark Bradford, Hugh Wiley, Charles Correll and Freeman Gosden. These writers left a curious legacy that deserves examination"--

The Strange Career of Porgy and Bess

Race, Culture, and America’s Most Famous Opera

Author: Ellen Noonan

Publisher: UNC Press Books

ISBN:

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 440

View: 552

Created by George Gershwin and DuBose Heyward and sung by generations of black performers, Porgy and Bess has been both embraced and reviled since its debut in 1935. In this comprehensive account, Ellen Noonan examines the opera's long history of invention and reinvention as a barometer of twentieth-century American expectations about race, culture, and the struggle for equality. In its surprising endurance lies a myriad of local, national, and international stories. For black performers and commentators, Porgy and Bess was a nexus for debates about cultural representation and racial uplift. White producers, critics, and even audiences spun revealing racial narratives around the show, initially in an attempt to demonstrate its authenticity and later to keep it from becoming discredited or irrelevant. Expertly weaving together the wide-ranging debates over the original novel, Porgy, and its adaptations on stage and film with a history of its intimate ties to Charleston, The Strange Career of "Porgy and Bess" uncovers the complexities behind one of our nation's most long-lived cultural touchstones.

Vaudeville old & new

an encyclopedia of variety performances in America

Author:

Publisher: Psychology Press

ISBN:

Category: Entertainers

Page: 639

View: 882

Visions of Belonging

Family Stories, Popular Culture, and Postwar Democracy, 1940-1960

Author: Judith E. Smith

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN:

Category: History

Page: 480

View: 358

Visions of Belonging explores how beloved and still-remembered family stories—A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, I Remember Mama, Gentleman's Agreement, Death of a Salesman, Marty, and A Raisin in the Sun—entered the popular imagination and shaped collective dreams in the postwar years and into the 1950s. These stories helped define widely shared conceptions of who counted as representative Americans and who could be recognized as belonging. The book listens in as white and black authors and directors, readers and viewers reveal divergent, emotionally textured, and politically charged social visions. Their diverse perspectives provide a point of entry into an extraordinary time when the possibilities for social transformation seemed boundless. But changes were also fiercely contested, especially as the war's culture of unity receded in the resurgence of cold war anticommunism, and demands for racial equality were met with intensifying white resistance. Judith E. Smith traces the cultural trajectory of these family stories, as they circulated widely in bestselling paperbacks, hit movies, and popular drama on stage, radio, and television. Visions of Belonging provides unusually close access to a vibrant conversation among white and black Americans about the boundaries between public life and family matters and the meanings of race and ethnicity. Would the new appearance of white working class ethnic characters expand Americans'understanding of democracy? Would these stories challenge the color line? How could these stories simultaneously show that black families belonged to the larger "family" of the nation while also representing the forms of danger and discriminations that excluded them from full citizenship? In the 1940s, war-driven challenges to racial and ethnic borderlines encouraged hesitant trespass against older notions of "normal." But by the end of the 1950s, the cold war cultural atmosphere discouraged probing of racial and social inequality and ultimately turned family stories into a comforting retreat from politics. The book crosses disciplinary boundaries, suggesting a novel method for cultural history by probing the social history of literary, dramatic, and cinematic texts. Smith's innovative use of archival research sets authorial intent next to audience reception to show how both contribute to shaping the contested meanings of American belonging.

Dreaming of Dixie

How the South Was Created in American Popular Culture

Author: Karen L. Cox

Publisher: UNC Press Books

ISBN:

Category: Social Science

Page: 224

View: 270

From the late nineteenth century through World War II, popular culture portrayed the American South as a region ensconced in its antebellum past, draped in moonlight and magnolias, and represented by such southern icons as the mammy, the belle, the chivalrous planter, white-columned mansions, and even bolls of cotton. In Dreaming of Dixie, Karen Cox shows that the chief purveyors of nostalgia for the Old South were outsiders of the region, playing to consumers' anxiety about modernity by marketing the South as a region still dedicated to America's pastoral traditions. In addition, Cox examines how southerners themselves embraced the imaginary romance of the region's past.

Electric Sounds

Technological Change and the Rise of Corporate Mass Media

Author: Steve J. Wurtzler

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN:

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 416

View: 212

Electric Sounds brings to vivid life an era when innovations in the production, recording, and transmission of sound revolutionized a number of different media, especially the radio, the phonograph, and the cinema. The 1920s and 1930s marked some of the most important developments in the history of the American mass media: the film industry's conversion to synchronous sound, the rise of radio networks and advertising-supported broadcasting, the establishment of a federal regulatory framework on which U.S. communications policy continues to be based, the development of several powerful media conglomerates, and the birth of a new acoustic commodity in which a single story, song, or other product was made available to consumers in multiple media forms and formats. But what role would this new media play in society? Celebrants saw an opportunity for educational and cultural uplift; critics feared the degradation of the standards of public taste. Some believed acoustic media would fulfill the promise of participatory democracy by better informing the public, while others saw an opportunity for manipulation. The innovations of this period prompted not only a restructuring and consolidation of corporate mass media interests and a shift in the conventions and patterns of media consumption but also a renegotiation of the social functions assigned to mass media forms. Steve J. Wurtzler's impeccably researched history adds a new dimension to the study of sound media, proving that the ultimate form technology takes is never predetermined. Rather, it is shaped by conflicting visions of technological possibility in economic, cultural, and political realms. Electric Sounds also illustrates the process through which technologies become media and the ways in which media are integrated into American life.

Black, White, and in Color

Television and Black Civil Rights

Author: Sasha Torres

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN:

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 140

View: 746

This book examines the representation of blackness on television at the height of the southern civil rights movement and again in the aftermath of the Reagan-Bush years. In the process, it looks carefully at how television's ideological projects with respect to race have supported or conflicted with the industry's incentive to maximize profits or consolidate power. Sasha Torres examines the complex relations between the television industry and the civil rights movement as a knot of overlapping interests. She argues that television coverage of the civil rights movement during 1955-1965 encouraged viewers to identify with black protestors and against white police, including such infamous villains as Birmingham's Bull Connor and Selma's Jim Clark. Torres then argues that television of the 1990s encouraged viewers to identify with police against putatively criminal blacks, even in its dramatizations of police brutality. Torres's pioneering analysis makes distinctive contributions to its fields. It challenges television scholars to consider the historical centrality of race to the constitution of the medium's genres, visual conventions, and industrial structures. And it displaces the analytical focus on stereotypes that has hamstrung assessments of television's depiction of African Americans, concentrating instead on the ways in which African Americans and their political collectives have actively shaped that depiction to advance civil rights causes. This book also challenges African American studies to pay closer and better attention to television's ongoing role in the organization and disorganization of U.S. racial politics.

Forgeries of Memory and Meaning

Blacks and the Regimes of Race in American Theater and Film before World War II

Author: Cedric J. Robinson

Publisher: UNC Press Books

ISBN:

Category: Social Science

Page: 456

View: 433

Cedric J. Robinson offers a new understanding of race in America through his analysis of theater and film of the early twentieth century. He argues that economic, political, and cultural forces present in the eras of silent film and the early "talkies" firmly entrenched limited representations of African Americans. Robinson grounds his study in contexts that illuminate the parallel growth of racial beliefs and capitalism, beginning with Shakespearean England and the development of international trade. He demonstrates how the needs of American commerce determined the construction of successive racial regimes that were publicized in the theater and in motion pictures, particularly through plantation and jungle films. In addition to providing new depth and complexity to the history of black representation, Robinson examines black resistance to these practices. Whereas D. W. Griffith appropriated black minstrelsy and romanticized a national myth of origins, Robinson argues that Oscar Micheaux transcended uplift films to create explicitly political critiques of the American national myth. Robinson's analysis marks a new way of approaching the intellectual, political, and media racism present in the beginnings of American narrative cinema.

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