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Creating the National Pastime Baseball Transforms Itself 1903-1953 Hardcover – March 4, 1996

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

It's a bit dangerous venturing into a subject to which so many entertaining and informative books have been devoted (John Helyar's Lords of the Realm or Andrew Zimbalist's Baseball and Billions, are two that come to mind). The best thing one can say about this addition is that White, a University of Virginia law and history professor and author of The Marshall Court and Cultural Change, does not take a dewy-eyed view of the game, as so many out-of-control sports scribes have done. His study on the reasons for baseball's eminence in American sports in the first part of the century, however, is frustrating. So lacking in prose style that calling it "lawyerly" would be high praise, Pastime is riddled with words like "monopsonistic" when "collusive" would do just fine. As an historian, White is objective to the point of being coy, relying way too much on such qualifiers as "may," "might" or "appear to be." After poring over old copies of the Sporting News for most of its 364 pages, White finally observes of baseball's national-pastime status, "It is possible, in short, that that status may have been linked, to an important extent, to baseball's economically and culturally anachronistic features." Back to you, Curt.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

White (law and history, Univ. of Virginia, and author of Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, LJ 11/1/93) turns his legal attentions to baseball. How did baseball, an urban sport originally known for its rowdiness and unwholesome image, transform itself into the mythical national pastime? White argues that proponents have always tried to sell a pristine image of the sport that is at great odds to the legal and business reality of how baseball is run. An excellent source for academic and large public libraries.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 364 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press (March 4, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0691034885
  • ISBN-13: 978-0691034881
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 6.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,496,752 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Expensive yes. But every line is loaded with facts. The detail about Shoeless Joe is better than anywhere. Old time stadiums? No finer discussion. Baseball on the radio? What a great introduction to the subject.
This is a commanding book. You will read it if you start.
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