A Short History of Celebrity

A Short History of Celebrity

4.0 1
by Fred Inglis
     
 

"With breathtaking range and panache, A Short History of Celebrity provides a keenly observed interpretation of the emergence of modern transatlantic popular culture. At once learned and accessible, Inglis's vivacious prose reveals the contradictions of icons as diverse as Joshua Reynolds and Lord Byron, the Beatles and Bob Dylan. His insights into the

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Overview

"With breathtaking range and panache, A Short History of Celebrity provides a keenly observed interpretation of the emergence of modern transatlantic popular culture. At once learned and accessible, Inglis's vivacious prose reveals the contradictions of icons as diverse as Joshua Reynolds and Lord Byron, the Beatles and Bob Dylan. His insights into the popular heroes of art, literature, and the stage and screen (including television), as well as politics and public life, enable us to appreciate continuities that stretch across two-hundred-and-fifty years."—Richard D. Brown, professor emeritus, University of Connecticut

"Celebrity is ripe for anatomizing, and in this enjoyable work of cultural history Inglis performs an exemplary dissection, showing both the pains and the pleasures, the shame and the virtues, of the modern cult of celebrity. This is vintage Inglis: funny, coruscating, biting."—Krishan Kumar, University of Virginia

"This is a fascinating, remarkable, and thought-provoking book. Its great value is that it doesn't begin with Survivor, Big Brother, or Oprah. Instead, Fred Inglis extends his study back to the eighteenth century and gives attention to painting, gossip columns, and wartime dictators, among much else. Inglis is a powerful and engaging writer and this book is a pleasure to read."—Tara Brabazon, University of Brighton

"Fred Inglis has a distinctive voice as he explores our ambivalence toward celebrities and the phenomenon of celebrity itself. Filled with examples and quotable passages, this is a heartfelt book by a man who is grounded in Wittgenstein yet familiar with David Beckham."—Richard Howells, King's College London

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780691135625
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Publication date:
07/26/2010
Pages:
322
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.10(d)

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ix

Part I: Fame and Feeling

Chapter 1: The Performance of Celebrity 3

Chapter 2: A Very Short History of the Feelings 19

Part II: The Rise of Celebrity: A Three-Part Invention

Chapter 3: The London-Brighton Road, 1760-1820 37

Chapter 4: Paris: Haute Couture and the Painting of Modern Life 74

Chapter 5: New York and Chicago: Robber Barons and the Gossip Column, 1880-1910 108

Part III: The Past in the Present

Chapter 6: The Geography of Recognition: Celebrity on Its Holidays 135

Chapter 7: The Great Dictators 158

Chapter 8: The Stars Look Down: The Democratisation of Celebrity 187

Chapter 9: From Each According to His Ability: Sport, Rock, Fashion, and the Self 217

Chapter 10: Stories We Tell Ourselves about Ourselves 247 Envoi: Cherishing Citizens 270

Notes 289

List of Illustrations 303

Index 305

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