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Law Enforcement in American Cinema, 1894-1952 by George Beck (2020)

Law Enforcement in American Cinema, 1894-1952 by George Beck (2020)

In this short title, author George Beck takes a close look at some movies of the first half of the twentieth century that employed representations of American law enforcement, starting with silent era productions and chronologically end with films noir. Five sections altogether and a final coda chapter on roughly 130 pages consider stereotypes, good […]

Hillbilly Maidens, Okies, and Cowgirls: Women’s Country Music, 1930-1960 by Stephanie Vander Wel (2020)

Hillbilly Maidens, Okies, and Cowgirls: Women’s Country Music, 1930-1960 by Stephanie Vander Wel (2020)

Going back to the early days of medicine shows, vaudeville and traveling entertainment troupes, female performers there already had their regular part in the entertainment industry; and country music, or hillbilly music as it was first named, played a role in building up that reputation. For example, what in the 1940s was transported as “parodic […]

Robots in American Popular Culture by Steve Carper (2019)

Robots in American Popular Culture by Steve Carper (2019)

The idea of building, commanding and using artificial creatures, based on mechanical components that would assist mankind doing anything from work, transportation or pleasure goes back to very early stories of creation such as the Gilgamesh epic. And mythology from ancient Greece and other regions. That idea also demonstrates man’s wish to become the creator […]

Star Attractions: Twentieth-Century Movie Magazines and Global Fandom by T. J. Mcdonald and L. Lanckman (eds.) (2019)

Star Attractions: Twentieth-Century Movie Magazines and Global Fandom by T. J. Mcdonald and L. Lanckman (eds.) (2019)

Ever since motion pictures became a crucial part of popular culture, certain consumers decided that simply watching those products and going to the theaters was not enough. Accordingly, editors of the earliest movie magazines quickly realized that gossip, behind-the-scenes talk and all sorts or rumors surrounding those new media stars obviously were  at least as […]

Forbidden Hollywood: The Pre-Code Era (1930-1934): When Sin Ruled the Movies by Mark A. Vieira (2019)

Forbidden Hollywood: The Pre-Code Era (1930-1934): When Sin Ruled the Movies by Mark A. Vieira (2019)

Film studies introduced countless movie fans to genres and varieties of films that were once praised just by small groups of fans. It was usually decades after the initial film releases, that, for example, the fascination with film noir, certain types of the westerns, or screwball comedy went beyond the tiny groups of connoisseurs and […]

Movies, Songs, and Electric Sound: Transatlantic Trends by Charles O’Brien (2019)

Movies, Songs, and Electric Sound: Transatlantic Trends by Charles O’Brien (2019)

Sound film changed many ideas and experiences of watching motion pictures; certain aspects that concern the use of songs, musical story lines and content of films from 1930 are evaluated here. Author O’Brian selected a corpus of roughly 500 feature films (including musical films) from France, the US, England and Hollywood’s greatest rival at that […]

Music Wars: Money, Politics, and Race in the Construction of Rock and Roll Culture, 1940-1960 by John C. Hajduk (2018...

“One way to interpret American society in the second half of the twentieth century, for good or ill, is to see it as the triumph of rock and roll culture,” argues John C. Hajduk, professor of history at the University of Montana Western in the book at hand. This peculiar culture was a compelling force […]

From Ameche to Zozzled: A Glossary of Hard-Boiled Slang of the 1920s through the 1940s by Joe Tradii (2018)

From Ameche to Zozzled: A Glossary of Hard-Boiled Slang of the 1920s through the 1940s by Joe Tradii (2018)

The hard-boiled fiction from the 1930s and the many films noir later, apart from several other similarities, shared a special gangster jargon and street-wise language that lent an extra air of authenticity to those works. As the many weird expressions, prohibition-time lingo, proverbs and often sexists, racist and plainly offensive words used there quickly went […]