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Bowery to Broadway: The American Irish in Classic Hollywood Cinema Hardcover – March 1, 2010
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“Bowery to Broadway makes a major contribution to the study of Irish-American ethnicity. Shannon shows that in films of the 1930s and 1940s—when the Irish were putatively embracing all of modern America’s values—the group was not only represented in Hollywood, but also offered a true-to-life alternative to modernity. In the world that Shannon retrieves, the ‘local comes first.’ He mines both familiar and nearly forgotten films to discern a cinematic tradition in which Irish-American prize-fighters, priests, vaudevillians and working girls lived in a world that countered mainstream assumptions: the urban Irish were skeptical of runaway individualism, unimpressed by the promise of personal liberation, and unapologetically Catholic. The Irish whom we meet in this immensely readable book can no longer be read as stereotypes. Shannon requires us to rethink whether Irish assimilation happened in quite the way we think it did, and sometimes, whether it happened at all. This is an essential book on the Irish in popular culture.”—James Silas Rogers, editor, New Hibernia Review, and president, American Conference for Irish Studies
(James Silas Rogers)
About the Author
Christopher Shannon is professor of history at Christendom College.