Studs Terkel's Chicago

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Overview


In the tradition of E. B. White?s bestselling Here Is New York, Chicago is a tribute to the ?Second City??part history, part memoir, and 100% Studs Terkel?infused with anecdotes, memories, and reflections that celebrate the great city.

Chicago was home to the country?s first skyscraper (a ten-story building built in 1884) and marks the start of the famed "Route 66." It is also the birthplace of the remote control (Zenith), the car radio (Motorola) and the first major American ...

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Overview


In the tradition of E. B. White’s bestselling Here Is New York, Chicago is a tribute to the “Second City”—part history, part memoir, and 100% Studs Terkel—infused with anecdotes, memories, and reflections that celebrate the great city.

Chicago was home to the country’s first skyscraper (a ten-story building built in 1884) and marks the start of the famed "Route 66." It is also the birthplace of the remote control (Zenith), the car radio (Motorola) and the first major American city to elect a woman (Jane Byrne) and then an African American man (Harold Washington) as mayor. Its literary and journalistic history is just as dazzling, and includes Nelson Algren, Mike Royko and Sara Paretsky. From Al Capone to the street riots during the Democratic National Convention in 1968, Chicago, in the words of Terkel himself, “has—as they used to whisper of the town’s fast woman—a reputation.”

Chicago was of course also home to the Pulitzer Prize–winning oral historian Studs Terkel, who moved to Chicago in 1922 as an eight-year-old and who would make it his home until his death in 2008 at the age of 96. This book is a splendid evocation of Studs’ hometown in all its glory—and all its imperfection.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Too personal to capture an objective view of Chicago, too much in a hop, skip, and a jump style to clearly focus on any aspect of the city, Terkel's latest book is entertaining, nostalgic, and a paean to his town. Managing to hark back to his own boyhood experiences and relate them to Chicago at large and occasionally voicing his own political philosophy, the author offers a kaleidoscopic tour. Policemen, dance ballrooms, race relations, WPA art, street art (not graffiti), and museum art, the Terkel rooming house, hospitals, a snowstorm, professional baseball, the Chicago Symphony, and the southside's reaction to Joe Louis's victory over Max Schmeling all come into view. Over 120 evocative photos enhance the text. Primarily regional in interest. Roger W. Fromm, Bloomsburg Univ. of Pennsylvania Lib.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781595587183
  • Publisher: New Press, The
  • Publication date: 3/6/2012
  • Pages: 144
  • Sales rank: 1,447,471
  • Product dimensions: 5.54 (w) x 9.96 (h) x 0.57 (d)

Meet the Author

Studs Terkel

Studs Terkel (1912–2008) was the bestselling author of twelve books of oral history, including Working; Hard Times; the Pulitzer Prize–winning “The Good War”; and, most recently, his memoir Touch and Go (all available from The New Press). He was the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including a Presidential National Humanities Medal and the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters.

Biography

As a young boy in the early 1920s, Louis "Studs" Terkel moved with his family from New York to Chicago, the sprawling, high-energy city he would call home for the rest of his life. His parents managed hotels catering to a varied and colorful clientele. Listening to the conversations of the tenants, young Terkel developed an early interest in people and their stories and a wide-ranging intellectual curiosity that would lead him in many directions.

He received his law degree from the University of Chicago, but never became a practicing attorney, Instead, he worked briefly in Washington, D.C., then returned to Chicago to take a job in FDR's Works Progress Administration acting and writing plays. In 1939, he married Ida Goldberg. The marriage endured for 60 years, until Ida's death in 1999. He joined the Army during WWII but was discharged because of perforated eardrums. Around this time, he embarked on a long, varied broadcasting career as a sportscaster, news commentator, and disc jockey. He ventured into TV in the 1950s with a relaxed, breezy variety show that helped define the Chicago School of Television, but returned to radio in 1952 with the a daily program of music and interviews that continued for the next 45 years. Among a constellation of memorable guests were Buster Keaton, Billie Holiday, James Baldwin, Leonard Bernstein, Tennessee Williams, Gloria Steinem, and Bob Dylan.

Although his first book Giants of Jazz was published in 1957, Terkel's writing career began in earnest a decade later with Division Street, a book of transcribed interviews with Chicagoans from every walk of life. Hailed by The New Yorker as "totally absorbing," this groundbreaking study paved the way for bestselling oral histories of the Great Depression (Hard Times), the working class (Working), WWII (the Pulitzer Prize winner The Good War), and growing old in America (Coming of Age). He also penned several memoirs, including Talking to Myself (1977), My American Century (1997), and Touch and Go (2007).

Active and engaged to the end, Terkel died in October of 2008 at the age of 96. In its obituary, the Chicago Tribune reprinted this epigrammatic quote from the iconic writer: "My epitaph? My epitaph will be, 'Curiosity did not kill this cat."

Good To Know

Terkel's famous nickname derives from the fictional character Studs Lonigan from James T. Farrell's 1930s coming-of-age trilogy.

Famously outspoken, Terkel was blacklisted from television during the McCarthy era for his "incendiary" political views. Fortunately, he found a wider audience when he was hired by Chicago's fine arts radio station WFMT, where his program was a daily staple for 45 years.

Instantly recognizable by his attire, Terkel always wore a red-checked shirt, grey trousers, and a blue blazer.

He appeared in Eight Men Out, John Sayles's 1988 film about the Chicago Black Sox Scandal of 1919.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Louis "Studs" Terkel
    1. Date of Birth:
      May 16, 1912
    2. Place of Birth:
      New York, NY
    1. Date of Death:
      October 31, 2008
    2. Place of Death:
      Chicago, IL

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2013

    Not half a book

    My bad. The page numbers were messed up so the photographs are just misplaced.
    Great read!

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