Journal of American Culture (Malden, MA)

Articles from Vol. 26, No. 4, December

A Feminist Reader in Early Cinema
A Feminist Reader in Early Cinema Jennifer M. Bean and Diane Negra, Editors. Durham: Duke University Press, 2002.This omnibus collection of twenty essays offers many things to a variety of readers, especially those with interests in the history and theory...
America as Second Creation: Technology and Narratives of New Beginnings
America as Second Creation: Technology and Narratives of New Beginnings David E. Nye. Cambridge: MIT Press, 2003.This examination of the cultural-technological history of America by one of the leading scholars in the field is a day-by-day walk through...
American Highways: Recurring Images and Themes of the Road Genre
Get your motor runnin'Head out on the highwayLookin' for adventureAnd whatever comes our way.Steppenwolf, "Born to be Wild"Americans are a restless people, imbued with a kind of nervous energy that manifests itself culturally through the mediums of literature,...
Art and Thought
Art and Thought Dana Arnold and Margaret !versen, Editors. London: Blackwell Publishers Ltd., 2003.This is a smart and savvy anthology by two of England's bright young art historians. They launch a new series called "New Interventions in Art History"...
Athena's Daughters: Television's New Women Warriors
Athena's Daughters: Television's New Women Warriors Frances Early and Kathleen Kennedy, Editors. Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2003."We don't need another hero," sings Tina Turner. And indeed, many resistant partakers of popular culture are in...
Captain America and the Crusade against Evil: The Dilemma of Zealous Nationalism
Captain America and the Crusade Against Evil: The Dilemma of Zealous Nationalism Robert Jewett and John Shelton Lawrence. Grand Rapids, MI and Cambridge: William B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2003.This book examines the very bone and muscle of American society...
Encyclopedia of Modern Everyday Inventions
Encyclopedia of Modern Everyday Inventions David J. Cole, Eve Browning, and Fred E. H. Schroeder, Editors. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 2003.As encyclopedias and dictionaries on virtually every subject from angels to devils pile up on our desks, this...
Faces in the Sky: The Anthropic Principle Design Argument
Of all of the arguments for the existence of God, perhaps the best known and best understood is the Argument from Design, or Teleological Argument. This venerable line of reasoning claims we can know there is a God because the natural world-and, in particular,...
Fitzgerald, Faulkner, and Little Lord Fauntleroy
It seems clear now from the point of view of the turn of the century that the United States had at least three major literary figures in the first half of the twentieth century: F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896-1940), William Faulkner (1897-1962), and Ernest...
Hollywood's White House: The American Presidency in Film and History
Hollywood's White House: The American Presidency in Film and History Peter C. Rollins and John O'Connor, Editors. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 2003.Trying to capture the spirit(s) of the presidents of the United States through the aims of...
Keeping Up with the Joneses: Envy in American Consumer Society, 1890-1930
Keeping Up with the Joneses: Envy in American Consumer Society, 1890-1930 Susan J. Matt. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2003.Consisting of an introduction, five chapters, a conclusion, and copious notes, Susan J. Matt's Keeping Up with...
Mickey and the Tramp: Walt Disney's Debt to Charlie Chaplin
In 1928, Walt Disney made film history when his studio released Steamboat Willie, the first animated talkie and the first cartoon to feature Mickey Mouse. Although Disney proved to be forward-thinking with regard to sound and later groundbreaking cinematic...
More Work Than Play: Insights from the Letters of J. Herbert George, Civil War Musician
The American Civil War has been described by many as the most musical of all wars. Be it popular songs of the day or marches and other band music, civilians and soldiers alike were surrounded by music. Today this music is enjoyed as much as when it was...
Movie Crazy: Fans, Stars, and the Cult of Celebrity
Movie Crazy: Fans, Stars, and the Cult of Celebrity Samantha Barbas. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2001."The world is movie mad," wrote one early silent-picture star in the San Francisco Examiner in 1915. And indeed, in her fine study of the rise of...
Postmodern Cinema and the Demise of the Family
No discussion of American cinema, postmodern or otherwise, would be complete without an attempt to engage the realm of the family, gender relations, and sexuality, perhaps the most emotionally charged of all spheres of contemporary social life. The vast...
Re-Membering Vietnam: War, Trauma, and "Scarring Over" after "The Wall"
The era of the Vietnam War was one of the most tumultuous in American history. It was a time that dismembered individuals, families, and much of the government and society- physically, psychologically, and intellectually. The process of addressing the...
Voices of Collective Remembering
Voices of Collective Remembering James W. Wertsch. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002.The first three chapters are geared toward a critique of the multiple meanings of collective memory. Several issues are reviewed, including accuracy versus...