Hollywood's America: Twentieth-Century America Through Film / Edition 4

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Fully revised, updated, and extended, this compilation of interpretive essays and primary documents teaches students to read films as cultural artifacts within the contexts of actual past events.

  • A new edition of this classic textbook, which ties movies into the broader narrative of US and film history
  • Ten new articles which consider recently released films, as well as issues of gender and ethnicity
  • Well-organized within a chronological framework with thematic treatments to provide a valuable resource for students of the history of American film
  • Fourth edition includes completely new images throughout
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The introduction alone fulfils the title's promise, giving a well-structured history of cinema and society in the US in the 20th century." (Times Higher Education Supplement, 24 February 2011)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781405190039
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/19/2010
  • Edition number: 4
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 644,646
  • Product dimensions: 6.70 (w) x 9.60 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Steven Mintz is Director of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Teaching Center at Columbia University. He is the author and editor of thirteen books, including Huck’s Raft: A History of American Childhood (2004), which received the Association of American Publishers R. R. Hawkins Award for the Outstanding Scholarly Book of 2004, and the Organization of American Historians 2004 Merle Curti Award for the best book in social history. He is the editor of African American Voices (4th edition, Wiley-Blackwell, 2009), Mexican American Voices (2nd edition, Wiley-Blackwell, 2009), and Native American Voices (2nd edition, Wiley-Blackwell, 2000).

Randy W. Roberts is Distinguished Professor of History at Purdue University, and specializes in recent US history, US sports history, and the history of popular culture. He is the author of Where the Domino Fell: America and Vietnam (5th edition, with James S. Olson, Wiley-Blackwell, 2006), Charles A. Lindbergh: The Power and Peril of Celebrity 1927–1941 (with David Welky, Wiley-Blackwell, 2003), Jack Dempsey: The Manassa Mauler (2003), A Line in the Sand: The Alamo in Blood and Memory (with James S. Olson, 2001), “But They Can’t Beat Us”: Oscar Robertson and the Crispus Attucks Tigers (1999), My Lai: A Brief History with Documents (with James S. Olson, 1998), John Wayne American (with James S. Olson, 1996), and Winning is the Only Thing: Sports in America since 1945 (with James S. Olson, 1991).

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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations ix

Preface x

Introduction: The Social and Cultural History of American Film 1

Part I The Silent Era 29

Introduction: Intolerance and the Rise of the Feature Film 29

1 Silent Cinema as Social Criticism: “Front Page Movies” Kay Sloan 31

2 Silent Cinema as Historical Mythmaker: “The Birth of a Nation” Eric Niderost 43

3 The Revolt Against Victorianism: “Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford, and the New Personality” Lary May 52

4 Primary Sources 63

Edison v. American Mutoscope Company 63

“The Nickel Madness” 63

Mutual Film Corp. v. Industrial Commission of Ohio 67

Fighting a Vicious Film: Protest Against The Birth of a Nation 69

Boston Branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, 1915 69

Analysis Francis Hackett 39

Part II Hollywood's Golden Age 71

Introduction: Backstage During the Great Depression: 42nd Street, Gold Diggers of 1933, and Footlight Parade 71

5 Depression America and its Films: “Laughing Through Tears” Maury Klein 75

6 The Depression's Human Toll: “Gangsters and Fallen Women” Peter Roffman Jim Purdy 82

7 Depression Allegories: “Gone with the Wind and The Grapes of Wrath as Hollywood Histories of the Great Depression” Thomas H. Pauly 91

8 African Americans on the Silver Screen: “The Evolution of Black Film” Thomas R. Cripps 100

9 Primary Sources 112

The Introduction of Sound 112

“Pictures That Talk” 112

Review of Don Juan 113

“Silence is Golden” 113

Film Censorship 116

The Sins of Hollywood, 1922 116

“The Don'ts and Be Carefuls” 118

The Motion Picture Production Code of 1930 119

Part III Wartime Hollywood 129

Introduction: Hollywood's World War II Combat Films 129

10 Casablanca as Propaganda: “You Must Remember This: The Case of Hal Wallis' Casablanca” Randy Roberts 133

11 Bureau of Motion Pictures Report: Casablanca 142

12 John Wayne and Wartime Hollywood: “John Wayne Goes to War” Randy Roberts 144

13 The Woman's Film: “When Women Wept” Jeanine Basinger 163

14 Primary Sources: US Senate Subcommittee Hearings on Motion Picture and Radio Propaganda, 1941 170

Part IV Postwar Hollywood

Introduction: Double Indemnity and Film Noir 175

15 The Red Scare in Hollywood: “HUAC and the End of an Era” Peter Roffman Jim Purdy 179

16 The Morality of Informing: “Ambivalence and On the Waterfront” Kenneth R. Hey 187

17 Science Fiction as Social Commentary: “The Age of Conspiracy and Conformity: Invasion of the Body Snatchers” (1956) Stuart Samuels 198

18 The Western as Cold War Film: “Gunfighters and Green Berets: The Magnificent Seven and the Myth of Counter-Insurgency” Richard Slotkin 207

19 Popular Culture in the Age of White Flight: “Film Noir, Disneyland, and the Cold War (Sub) Urban Imaginary” Eric Avila 219

20 Primary Sources 234

United States v. Paramount Pictures, Inc. (1947) 234

Hearings Regarding the Communist Infiltration of the Motion Picture Industry 235

US House of Representatives Committee on Un-American Activities, 1947 235

US House of Representatives Committee on Un-American Activities, 1951 235

The Miracle Decision 238

Inc. v. Wilson, Commissioner of Education of New York, et al. (1952) Joseph Burstyn 238

Part V Hollywood and the Tumultuous 1960s 241

Introduction: Bonnie and Clyde 241

21 A Shifting Sensibility: “Dr. Strangelove: Nightmare Comedy and the Ideology of Liberal Consensus” Charles Maland 243

22 Films of the Late 1960s and Early 1970s: “From Counterculture to Counterrevolution, 1967-1971” Michael Ryan Douglas Kelner 255

23 Reaffirming Traditional Values: “The Blue Collar Ethnic in Bicentennial America: Rocky” Daniel J. Leab 264

24 Presenting African Americans on Film: “The Rise and Fall of Sidney Poitier” Aram Goudsouzian 272

25 Coming to Terms with the Vietnam War: “A Sacred Mission: Oliver Stone and Vietnam” Randy Roberts David Welky 281

26 Primary Sources: The Hollywood Rating System, 1968 301

Part VI Hollywood in Our Time 305

Introduction: A Changing Hollywood 305

27 Feminism and Recent American Film: “Gendering Expectations: Genre and Allegory in Readings of Thelma and Louise” Aspasia Kotsopoulos 309

28 Hollywood Remembers World War II: “Saving Private Ryan and Postwar Memory in America” John Bodnar 329

29 East Meets West: “The Asian Invasion (of Multiculturalism) in Hollywood” Minh-Ha T. Pham 340

30 Immigration at the Movies: “The Immigrant in Film: Evolution of an Illuminating Icon” Carlos E. Cortés 354

31 Movies and the Construction of Historical Memory: “Movies, History, and the Disneyfication of the Past: The Case of Pocahontas” Steven Mintz 364

Bibliography of Recent Books in American Film History 371

Index 395

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