Media, Popular Culture, and the American Century

Media, Popular Culture, and the American Century

Kingsley Bolton and Jan Olsson
Distribution: World
Publication date: 01/13/2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 978-0-861-96698-1
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In 1941, media mogul Henry R. Luce exulted, "American jazz, Hollywood movies, American slang, American machines and patented products are in fact the only things that every community in the world, from Zanzibar to Hamburg, recognizes in common." It is as true today as it was then. From the early days of Hollywood, an insatiable demand for U.S. cultural products—in advertising, fashion, film, popular music, television, and much else—has had a profound and continuing impact across the globe. Media, Popular Culture, and the American Century explores a diverse range of Americana, where the borders between the real and the imaginary, dream and dystopia, America and the world, blur and disappear. Essays move from configurations of U.S. culture in the early 1900s to the age of Google and digital music.

Author Bio

Kingsley Bolton is Professor of English at City University of Hong Kong.

Jan Olsson is Professor of Cinema Studies at Stockholm University.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: The American Century—and now what?, Kingsley Bolton and Jan Olsson:

Part I. Cinema and Americanization
1. Italian Marionettes Meet Cinematic Modernity, an Olsson
2. Red-Blooded America in the Early Feature Film, Joel Frykholm
3. Song of the Sonic Body: Noise, the Audience, and Early American Moving Picture Culture, Meredith Ward
4. Constructing the American Vernacular: The Media and Language Change, Kingsley Bolton,

Part II. Americans at the Margins
5. You Only Love Once: Repetitions of Crime as Desire in the Films of Sylvia Sidney, 1930–1937, Esther Sonnet
6. Punks! Topicality and the 1950s Gangster Bio-Pic Cycle, Peter Stanfield
7. Civil Rights on the Screen, Michael Renov

Part III. American Dreams/American
8. Sun Yu and the Early Americanization of Chinese Cinema, Corrado Neri
9. Amérique, A-mei-li-ga and métissage: Looking for America in Martinique, Gold Mountain, and the Cuban-Chinese Restaurant, Gregory Lee
10. Importing Evil: The American Gangster, Swedish Cinema, and Anti-American Propaganda, Ann-Kristin Wallengren

Part IV America Goes Digital
11. Goodbye Rabbit Ears: Visualizing and mapping the U.S. Digital TV Transition, Lisa Parks
12. Archival Transitions and Digital Propositions, Pelle Snickars
13. Are Americans Human?, Evelyn Ch’ien

Afterword: Rethinking American Studies, William Uricchio

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