Making Americans : Jews and the Broadway Musical
Andrea MostISBN: 0674011651; 9780674011656;
Book DescriptionFrom 1925 to 1951—three chaotic decades of economic depression, war, and social upheaval—Jewish writers brought to the musical stage a powerfully appealing vision of America, fashioned through song and dance. It was anoptimistic, meritocratic, selectively inclusive America in which Jews could at once lose and find themselves—assimilation enacted onstage and off, as Andrea Most shows. This book examines two interwoven narratives crucial to an understanding of twentieth-century American culture: the stories of Jewish acculturation and of the Broadway musical's coming-of-age. Here we delve into the work of the most influential artists of the genre during the years surrounding World War II—Irving Berlin, Eddie Cantor, Dorothy and Herbert Fields, George and Ira Gershwin, Oscar Hammerstein, Lorenz Hart, and Richard Rodgers—and encounter new interpretations of classics such as The Jazz Singer, Whoopee, Girl...