Madcaps, Screwballs, and Con Women: The Female Trickster in American Culture / Edition 1

Madcaps, Screwballs, and Con Women: The Female Trickster in American Culture / Edition 1

by Lori Landay
     
 

ISBN-10: 0812216512

ISBN-13: 9780812216516

Pub. Date: 02/28/1998

Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press, Inc.

Women have been tricking men for thousands of years, and female tricksters have been appearing in classic and popular texts at least since the Thousand and One Nights. While there are many studies of tricksters, few have focused on the chicanery of women, and none have dealt with the ways in which the female trickster is constructed in America.

Madcaps,

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Overview

Women have been tricking men for thousands of years, and female tricksters have been appearing in classic and popular texts at least since the Thousand and One Nights. While there are many studies of tricksters, few have focused on the chicanery of women, and none have dealt with the ways in which the female trickster is constructed in America.

Madcaps, Screwballs, and Con Women is the first book to explore the cultural work performed by female tricksters in the "new country" of American mass consumer culture. Beginning with such nineteenth-century novels as Capitola the Madcap and moving through twentieth-century novels, films, radio, and television shows, Lori Landay looks at how popular heroines use craft and deceit to circumvent the limitations of femininity. She considers texts of the 1920s such as Elinor Glyn's It and Anita Loos's Gentlemen Prefer Blondes; films of Mae West, as well as other Depression-era and wartime film comedy; the postwar television series I Love Lucy; and such contemporary texts as "Roseanne," "Ellen," and "Batman." In addition, Landay explores the connections between these texts and advertisements selling products that encourage female deception and trickery.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780812216516
Publisher:
University of Pennsylvania Press, Inc.
Publication date:
02/28/1998
Series:
Feminist Cultural Studies, the Media, and Political Culture Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.71(d)

Table of Contents

Preface: "Whenever I Take a Notion"
Introduction1
1Running Mad, Taking Cover: Female Tricksters in Nineteenth-Century Fiction by American Women32
2Economics and Erotics: The Female Trickster in the Jazz Age47
3Out of the Garden and into the War: Female Tricksters in the Depression and War Years94
4Liminal Lucy: Covert Power, Television, and Postwar Domestic Ideology155
5You Can't Go Home Again: Feminism and the Female Trickster in Contemporary American Culture197
Notes219
Selected Bibliography231
Acknowledgments245
Index247

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